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Industry News

DOE Awards $126.6 Million to Carbon Sequestration Projects

LCG, May 7, 2008--The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) yesterday announced awards of over $126.6 million to two carbon sequestration projects designed to demonstrate the potential for permanent storage of over one million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) in geologic formations. A critical goal of the DOE is to develop carbon sequestration capabilities that will better enable the long-term use of coal for power production while controlling CO2 emissions to address climate change concerns.

Acting Deputy Secretary of Energy stated, "The formations to be tested during the third phase of the partnerships program are the most promising of the major geologic basins in the United States. Collectively, these formations have the potential to store more than 100 hundred years of CO2 emissions from all major point sources in North America," "Tests like these will help provide the confidence and build the infrastructure necessary to commercialize these technologies, and will enable the U.S. to continue using its vast resources of coal while protecting the earth for future generations."

The Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (MRCSP) will demonstrate CO2 storage in the Mount Simon Sandstone, which extends from Kentucky through Ohio. The MRCSP will inject approximately one million tons of CO2 from an ethanol production plant at the facility site. The MRCSP includes Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, and Michigan. The estimated total project cost is approximately $93 million, with the DOE and partner shares being $61 and $32 million, respectively.

The second project is with the West Coast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (WESTCARB), which will develop project in the San Joaquin Basin in Central California near Lodi. Over one million tons of CO2 from a 50-MW power plant will be injected over four years into deep (over 7,000 feet) geologic formations. The power plant uses natural or synthesis gas in an oxyfuel system and produces a relatively pure stream of CO2 gas that will be compressed and injected into the underground formations. The WESTCARB Partnership includes California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii, and British Columbia. The estimated total project cost is approximately $91 million, with the DOE and partner shares being $66 and $25 million, respectively.

The roles of both WESTCARB and MRCSP for the projects will include development of the infrastructure, operations, closure, and monitoring of the injected CO2.

These DOE awards are the fifth and sixth of seven awards in the third phase of the DOE's Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships program. The DOE announced the first three large volume carbon sequestration projects, which total $318 million, last October.

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