Bipartisan senators want 'highest possible' funding for carbon capture technology

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A bipartisan group of senators is pushing for funding at the “highest possible levels” for carbon capture technology development.

The 12 lawmakers, including four Republicans, urged Senate appropriators to provide the Department of Energy with maximum funding for carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS).

“As the world transitions towards a carbon constrained economy, investment in CCUS technology will spur economic development and ensure energy security while protecting the environment from carbon dioxide emissions and maintaining global leadership role in research and development,” the lawmakers wrote Thursday in letter to the top senators on the Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development.

The letter was signed by Sens. John BarrassoJohn Anthony BarrassoMenendez, Rubio lead Senate effort to regulate Venezuelan sanctions The Hill’s 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Dems set stage for fight over security clearances GOP lawmakers root against Trump in court on ObamaCare MORE (R-Wyo.), Michael BennetMichael Farrand BennetMore than 30 Senate Dems ask Trump to reconsider Central American aid cuts The Hill’s Morning Report – Can Joe Biden turn the page? Michael Bennet says he intends to run for president if he is cancer free MORE (D-Colo.), Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsMenendez, Rubio lead Senate effort to regulate Venezuelan sanctions Dem report questions State Dept. decision to revoke award to Trump critic Senate Dem calls on Trump to apologize for attacks on McCain MORE (D-Del.), Kevin CramerKevin John CramerThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition – Fresh off Mueller win, Trump presses for GOP health care push GOP senators give Trump standing ovation The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition – Dems look for traction following Barr-Mueller findings MORE (R-N.D.), Steve DainesSteven (Steve) David DainesGreen New Deal vote tests Dem unity in Senate Hillicon Valley: Mueller delivers report, ending investigation | FEMA exposed info of 2.3M disaster survivors | Facebook asks judge to toss DC privacy lawsuit | Trump picks his first CTO | FCC settles lawsuit over net neutrality records JOBS for Success Act would recognize that all people have potential MORE (R-Mont.), Tammy DuckworthLadda (Tammy) Tammy DuckworthMore than 30 Senate Dems ask Trump to reconsider Central American aid cuts Dems release government report on TSA vulnerabilities Dem support grows for allowing public funds to pay for abortions MORE (D-Ill.), Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerBipartisan bill to protect legal cannabis businesses introduced McConnell sets stage for ‘nuclear option’ to change rules on judges GOP senators blindsided by Trump on ObamaCare MORE (R-Colo.), Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineMore than 30 Senate Dems ask Trump to reconsider Central American aid cuts Menendez, Rubio lead Senate effort to regulate Venezuelan sanctions The Hill’s Morning Report – GOP balks at Trump border closure MORE (D-Va.), Angus KingAngus Stanley KingOvernight Energy: Interior pick heads toward Senate confirmation | Dems want probe into nominee’s role on pesticide report | House climate panel holds first hearing Trump pick for Interior heads toward Senate confirmation Steyer: Green New Deal helped ‘move the ball forward’ on climate change MORE (I-Maine), Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinOvernight Energy: Interior pick heads toward Senate confirmation | Dems want probe into nominee’s role on pesticide report | House climate panel holds first hearing Trump pick for Interior heads toward Senate confirmation Long-shot goal of nixing Electoral College picks up steam MORE (D-W.Va.), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterBipartisan group proposes legislation to help tribal communities combat violence against Native women Long-shot goal of nixing Electoral College picks up steam Endorsements? Biden can’t count on a flood from the Senate MORE (D-Mont.) and Sheldon WhitehouseSheldon WhitehouseSanders slams GOP ‘hatred’ on health care in hearing Overnight Energy: Green New Deal vote set to test Dem unity | Renewables on track to phase out coal, study finds | EPA chief reportedly recuses himself from mine review Green New Deal vote tests Dem unity in Senate MORE (D-R.I.).

They argued that investment in creating viable options to capture carbon emissions released into the atmosphere could spur U.S. job growth.

“According to the International Energy Agency and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), CCUS is a critical component of the portfolio of energy technologies needed to reduce carbon dioxide emissions worldwide,” the senators wrote. “As the U.S. develops CCUS technologies, we will benefit not only from cleaner power here at home, but from new markets for U.S. technologies abroad, including innovations towards direct air capture.”

The two federal programs that include carbon capture research received $101 million and $98 million in funding, respectively, for fiscal year 2019. President TrumpDonald John TrumpGroups ask judge to halt border wall construction Trump on Barbara Bush criticism: ‘Look what I did to her sons’ Man charged for throwing water balloons at Trump crowd: ‘I did what I had to do’ MORE‘s budget request for 2020 calls for combining the two programs into one, funded at $69 million.

The senators said in their letter that the two programs should not be combined.

Carbon capture technology investment has emerged as a rare bipartisan issue when it comes to climate change. While GOP senators have long resisted efforts by progressives to transition the country away from fossil fuels, some have embraced the idea of carbon capture as an alternative.

Congress last year passed legislation that expanded carbon sequestration tax credits to companies.

The technology, however, remains in its early stages and hasn’t been widely adopted, due in large part to its implementation cost. That’s why lawmakers are calling for more federal funding.

“Like the wind and solar industries, a combination of federal incentives such as tax credits and federal funding for research, development and demonstration, will be needed to improve the technology so that it can be cost-competitive with other forms of low CO2 emitting technologies,” the 12 senators wrote, adding that the U.S. “is in a position to be a global leader” on carbon capture technology.

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