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Legislative Memo

Ken Pokalsky
Sr. Director of Government Affairs
T 518.465.7517 x205
www.bcnys.org

BILL:

A.8802 (Parment) / S.53303 (Rules)
Governor's Program # 45

  Support

SUBJECT:

Pilot Project for Permitting Carbon Sequestration

 

A.8802 (Parment) / S.53303 (Rules)
Governor's Program # 45

DATE:

July 6, 2009

 

The Business Council supports this legislation that establishes the legal framework for state permitting of carbon sequestration.  This legislation is necessary to allow the Oxy-Coal Circulating Fluidized Bed (CFB) power plant proposed by the New York Oxy-Coal Alliance to be constructed in Jamestown, New York to go forward with its funding and development.

Oxy-Coal technology is one of several innovative approaches that present an enormous opportunity to address three major concerns facing the State and the Nation – meeting our need for new power generation, increasing our use of domestic energy supplies, and reducing our emissions of greenhouse gases.

Oxy-coal technology involves the combustion of coal in a mixture of oxygen and re-circulated flue gas, allowing the efficient capture of carbon dioxide.  Once captured, the carbon dioxide can be compressed and transported by pipeline for sequestration in an approved underground storage site.

While this technology is available, New York's environmental statutes do not allow for state permitting and oversight of carbon capture, transport and sequestration.

This legislation authorizes the Department of Environmental Conservation to permit and regulate a pilot project, limited to a single proposed Oxy-Coal CFB demonstration project.  This will allow the state to develop necessary procedural and regulatory programs related to carbon sequestration projects.

With New York already committed to greenhouse gas emission reductions from its power generation sector, and Congress likely to adopt national GHG restrictions, it is essential that we promote cost-effective strategies to meet our energy demands in this carbon restricted regulatory environment.

We believe that Oxy-Coal technology presents a tremendous opportunity to meet the state's energy and environmental objectives, and that state promotion of this Oxy-Coal CFB demonstration project will put New York in a role of national leadership in developing workable, protective regulation of carbon sequestration.

For these reasons, The Business Council supports approval of A.8802/S.53303.