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Thursday, December 27, 2012

New report urges caution on biomass energy

A new report prepared by the Partnership for Public Integrity has raised serious concerns about Pennsylvania’s – and by implication, the rest of the nation’s - increasing use of burning wood for energy.

The PPI report describes Pennsylvania’s biomass energy sector as consisting of more than 60 sawmills and wood-related enterprises that burn wood scraps and sawdust from mill operations, as well as wood chips from forestry operations and land-clearing. There are 35 existing and proposed institutional and commercial biomass burners, including 12 “Fuels for Schools and Beyond” projects, and about 20 wood pellet manufacturing mills in Pennsylvania, with several more proposed.  

PPI says that demand for forest-derived biomass fuel and wood for pellet manufacturing in Pennsylvania is now similar in magnitude to the amount of wood converted to lumber and raises concerns about the impact of the demand for fuel wood on forests.

During my tenure at Pennsylvania’s Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), I supported the Fuels for Schools program, and the Chesapeake Bay Commission’s work on biofuels.  But sustainability is key to biomass energy development, at least from the standpoint of supply of wood. Overharvesting of forest-based wood resources could do major damage to Penn’s Woods, harming soil fertility and ecological values.  So, several years ago, DCNR issued guidelines for biomass harvesting.  The guidance is just that, and as PPI points out, isn’t enforceable.

PPI raises two additional, critical cautions on biomass energy.  First, PPI’s report claims that burning biomass – and even wood pellet manufacturing – can emit large amounts of air pollutants, depending on the emissions technology employed.  These include particulate matter (PM), smog-producing nitrogen oxides (NOX) and volatile organic compounds (VOC), and carbon monoxide (CO). The problem grows if wood is sourced from construction or demolition activities, where wood is often chemically-treated.

PPI says that schools and other institutions that replace oil heating systems with biomass “will likely experience significant increases in local air pollution” – “PM emissions exceed oil emissions by a factor of seven, biomass NOX emissions are 1.5 times oil emissions, and biomass CO emissions are four times oil emissions.”

Second, PPI says that biomass facilities - often considered “carbon neutral” - emit more CO2 per unit of energy generated than fossil fuel facilities.  That is obviously troubling from a climate perspective.

PPI makes several recommendations for a “no regrets” policy for continued development of biomass energy and pellet manufacturing:

  • Additional scrutiny of potential air pollution impacts and enactment of additional pollution controls and air quality monitoring;  
  • Require forest regeneration activities to offset higher CO2 emissions;
  • Establish a rigorous testing program to ensure that contaminated wood is not used for pellet manufacture; and
  • Reevaluate the role of biomass energy in the state’s alternative energy portfolio, including withholding support for large electricity-only biomass facilities and restricting eligibility for alternative energy credits to small combined heat and power facilities that employ the best emissions controls available.

PPI’s report merits serious evaluation and consideration.

Friday, December 21, 2012

U.S. EPA issues fracking study progress report

The U.S. EPA has issued a 278-page Progress Report on its study of the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on drinking water resources.  The report outlines the framework for the final study, but does not draw any conclusions.  Those will be made in the final study.

The Executive Summary says that the work is arranged around the five stages of the hydraulic fracking water cycle and questions about the possible impacts on drinking water resources of: 
  • large volume water withdrawals from ground and surface waters;
  • hydraulic fracturing fluid surface spills on or near well pads;
  • the injection and fracturing process;  
  • flowback and produced water surface spills on or near well pads; and  
  • inadequate treatment of hydraulic fracturing wastewater
The report describes 18 research projects underway to answer these research questions.  There are five different types:
  • analysis of existing data on chemicals and practices; data is drawn from nine companies that hydraulically fractured 24,925 wells between September 2009 and October 2010, and additional data on chemicals and water use for hydraulic fracturing from over 12,000 well-specific chemical disclosures in FracFocus.  EPA is evaluating data on causes and volumes of spills of hydraulic fracturing fluids and wastewater drawn from state spill databases in Colorado, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania, and from the National Response Center national database of oil and chemical spills;
  • scenario evaluations, including potential impacts to drinking water sources from withdrawing large volumes of water in the Upper Colorado River Basin and the Susquehanna River Basin; 
  • laboratory studies on potential impacts of inadequately treating hydraulic fracturing wastewater and discharging it to rivers;  
  • toxicity assessments of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing fluids from 2005 to 2011 and chemicals found in flowback and produced water; and 
  • case studies of locations in Colorado, North Dakota, Pennsylvania (in Bradford and Washington counties), and Texas

EPA is also reviewing scientific literature relevant to the study’s research questions.

Results of the study are expected to be released in a draft for public and peer review in 2014. 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Frog in pot of boiling water to turn up heat

MCMR finds that coal’s share of the global energy mix continues to rise; coal demand continues to rise globally, led by China and India; and by 2017 coal will come close to surpassing oil as the world’s top energy source.  All without meaningful progress in developing or deploying carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) or other technologies.

IEA’s notes that the United States is the exception to the rule of rising global coal demand, as coal here is being displaced by natural gas. However, while U.S. domestic coal consumption has fallen, exports of U.S. coal have risen.

IEA Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven said that “the world will burn around 1.2 billion more tonnes of coal per year by 2017 compared to today – equivalent to the current coal consumption of Russia and the United States combined.”

That works out to an additional 1.2 billion tons of CO2 emissions per year.

MCMR assumes the continued unavailability of CCS. In a significant understatement, Ms. Van der Hoeven said, “CCS technologies are not taking off as once expected.”  She offered a four-pronged approach to reducing emissions from coal use, all of which will require massive investment:

  • Deploying the most efficient coal combustion techniques;
  • Enacting a meaningful carbon price and using cheap natural gas to encourage replacement of coal by lower-emission energy sources.  In the absence of a high carbon price, only “fierce competition from low-priced gas” can effectively reduce coal demand, CO2 emissions - and consumers’ electricity bills – “without harming energy security,” Ms. van der Hoeven said.  “Europe, China and other regions should take note.”

I would add a fifth element to this approach which is perhaps implied by Ms. Van der Hoeven: using cheap natural gas to drive alternative energy development.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Climate disruption is a “stress test” for the insurance industry

Insurance is the world’s largest industry with U.S. $4.6 trillion in revenues - 7% of the global economy - according to Evan Mills, a scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.  It is also an industry that is acutely threatened by climate disruption. 

In a study published in the journal Science, Mills says that insurers now pay an average of $50 billion a year in weather- and climate-related insurance losses, including property damage and business disruptions.  He says that such claims have been doubling every decade since the 1980s.

In the face of those loses and certainty that they will mount, Evans says that the insurance industry has chosen to invest about $2 trillion (44% of industry revenues) in a variety of initiatives in 51 countries: 

  • supporting climate research;
  • developing climate-responsive products and services;
  • raising awareness of climate change;
  • reducing their own in-house emissions;
  • quantifying and disclosing climate risks;
  • incorporating climate change into $25 trillion (with a “t”) worth of investment decisions; and
  • engaging in public policy

These activities have grown since 2008, when the global economic downturn began. Mills told the Los Angeles Times that, rather than repeating the tired “political rhetoric” that it cannot afford such measures now, the industry instead “believes it can't afford not to” make these investments.

That is the attitude that other industries and governments fail to adopt at our peril. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Waterless fracking - and US companies - seen as keys to China shalegas development

The successful development of China's apparently massive shale gas reserves - the world's largest and 50% larger than the U.S.’s reserves - may depend on finding a way to perform fracking without water

According to this report, the world's most populous country and the world's largest energy consumer will only be able to develop the vast reserves in the arid north of China by either finding "some way to frack waterlessly or utilize a source of water that has yet to be identified."

The article also points out that almost all fracking technology and experience is owned by U.S. companies.  The China shale gas challenge presents an immense business opportunity and another imperative that can - and must - propel the shale gas industry toward developing new technologies that eliminate the use of water and chemicals in fracking, and many of the environmental and health risks along with them.  

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

PA Gov's office issues important report on natgas gathering lines

Patrick Henderson, Governor Tom Corbett’s Energy Executive, has issued a must-read report to the Pennsylvania General Assembly on natural gas gathering lines in the Commonwealth, as required by Act 13.

Gathering lines are the pipelines that carry natural gas from wells - in this case, unconventional gas wells - to a transmission line.  Currently, the report says that there are 1,728 miles of those lines in Pennsylvania – a number that will grow dramatically in Pennsylvania in the coming decades.  So, the topic is an extremely important one for Pennsylvania.

The report reviews existing laws governing gathering line placement and makes 16 recommendations for improving environmental and public safety - including six that aim to reduce or minimize the impact of gathering line development:

  • Remove legal impediments to the sharing of state and local road rights-of-way with gathering lines to encourage the use of existing corridors and reduce habitat fragmentation.  

Co-location of infrastructure is something that is required on the state’s public forestlands where drilling occurs; it should be the rule statewide.  Co-locating pipelines and roads in existing corridors or sharing new ones, besides saving developers money, avoids needless duplication and scenes like this:

Mark Godfrey/The Nature Conservancy

  • In a similar vein, county planning offices should work with drillers and gathering line companies to maximize opportunities for shared rights-of-way;
  • Enhance the PA Natural Diversity Inventory review tool to assist gathering line developers in avoiding conflicts with threatened and endangered species;
  • The Departmentof Environmental Protection should adopt environmental review standards for drilling proposals that avoid surface disturbances, impacts on sensitive lands, forest fragmentation, viewsheds and direct intersection with waterways;
  • County and municipal governments should be encouraged to consult with gathering line operators to better understand the implications of a proposed project on local comprehensive plans;
  • Pipeline operators should be encouraged to consult with appropriate experts to replant rights-of-way with vegetation that fosters habitat development for wildlife

These solid recommendations provide an excellent start to reducing the impact of gathering line development on Penn’s Woods. But they are only a start, for two reasons.

First, saying the right thing and doing things right are not necessarily the same. Details matter, and need to be spelled out. And regulations requiring that those recommendations are put into place - and then enforced - matter.  

Second, the report's recommendations are far from the last word.  One example is that limits must be placed on the amount of open trenching for pipelines that is allowed. 

Mark Godfrey/The Nature Conservancy

In situations like this, with mounded soil piled alongside perhaps miles of open trenches, heavy rain events can cause big erosion and sedimentation problems that needlessly threaten waterways.  Regulations preventing this practice are needed.

Improved infrastructure planning, development, management, and regulation of these activities are essential to ensuring responsible natural gas production.  This report should be read seriously and acted upon. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Update on U.S. EPA study of fracking and drinking water

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues its essential work in studying the potential impacts of hydraulic fracturing on drinking water resources.  EPA has scheduled a series of technical workshops on analytical chemical methods related to that study and is seeking subject-matter experts to contribute to the workshops.  

EPA has also posted information and materials from five Technical Roundtables held in November on water acquisition, chemical mixing, well injection, produced water, and wastewater treatment.  

EPA plans to hold additional technical workshops in 2013 on water acquisition, assessing impacts, wastewater treatment, well construction/operation, and case studies.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

U.S. DOE releases study on natgas exports

The U.S. Department of Energy has released a study that assessed the potential macroeconomic impact of liquefied natural gas (“LNG”) exports.  Macroeconomic Impacts of LNG Exports from the United States was performed by NERA Economic Consulting for DOE.   

NERA estimated expected levels of U.S. LNG exports under several scenarios for global natural gas supply and demand, and modeled the U.S. macroeconomic impacts resulting from those LNG exports. 

The key findings are:

  • The U.S. was projected to gain net economic benefits from allowing LNG exports; the benefits increased as the level of LNG exports increased. “In particular, scenarios with unlimited exports always had higher net economic benefits than corresponding cases with limited exports”, the study said.
  • NERA said that benefits from export expansion more than outweigh the losses from reduced capital and wage income to U.S. consumers, despite higher domestic natural gas prices. 
  • U.S. natural gas prices increase when the U.S. exports LNG. But the global market limits how high U.S. natural gas prices can rise.  NERA said that natural gas price increases at the start of LNG exports range from zero to $0.33 (2010$/Mcf). The largest price increases that would be observed after 5 more years of potentially growing exports could range from $0.22 to $1.11 (2010$/Mcf).  
  • How increased LNG exports will affect different socioeconomic groups will depend on their income sources. Both total labor compensation and income from investment are projected to decline, and income to owners of natural gas resources will increase, according to NERA: 
“Different socioeconomic groups depend on different sources of income, though through retirement savings an increasingly large number of workers share in the benefits of higher income to natural resource companies whose shares they own.  Nevertheless, impacts will not be positive for all groups in the economy.  Households with income solely from wages or government transfers, in particular, might not participate in these benefits.” 

The way I read this, and perhaps to oversimplify, working class and low-income Americans’ wages especially would decline and both they and people who don’t own stock in gas companies and rely on Social Security income would face higher natural gas prices to heat their homes and cook. Is that a good deal for the nation?

  • NERA says that “serious competitive impacts are likely to be confined to narrow segments of industry.”  About 10% of U.S. manufacturing, they say, is energy intensive and faces serious exposure to foreign competition.  Employment in those industries is about one-half of one percent of total U.S. employment, according to NERA. 
  • LNG exports are not likely to affect the overall level of employment in the U.S. There will be some shifts in the number of workers across industries. 

Like any study, the question asked, the model used, and the assumptions fed into that model are all crucial.  Further, it is an economic study; it does not factor in climate costs and benefits of LNG exports; for example, the impacts of LNG exports on natural gas price levels and hence fuel switching and associated carbon dioxide emissions here and abroad.

I hope the study will be closely scrutinized, and that it will fuel serious debate about whether and at what level the U.S. will allow natural gas exports.

Report: CCS needed now

The ENGO Network, a global network on environmental NGOs, has issued a report on the future and potential role of carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology in mitigating climate disruption.

Perspectives on Carbon Capture and Storage offers four main arguments for the urgent deployment of CCS.  The first is that CCS provides a means to reduce emissions from the vast number of existing stationary power sources, primarily fueled by coal. The sheer size of this installed base and its projected growth makes it “a daunting proposal” to replace it entirely through efficiency and renewable energy.  The report says, with a healthy dose of realism:

“Even if such replacement is technically possible (and credible country analyses say that it is), very large economic, political and social inertia would need to be overcome for this to happen… A balanced and hedged approach, at the very least, dictates having contingencies in place in case the shift away from fossil fuels takes longer than planned or desired.  CCS offers precisely such a capability to dramatically reduce emissions from fossil fuel use both at existing facilities and at future ones.

With the advent of the global shale gas boom; however, the report notes that even natural gas’ 50% lower carbon intensity in power generation is incompatible with averting climate catastrophe, and calls for CCS to be used in natural gas applications.

ENGO’s second argument is that the scale of emission reductions needed to combat climate disruption means that no single technology will be able to deliver those reductions by itself.  A portfolio of technologies increases the probability of achieving emission reduction targets, likely at lower overall costs.

ENGO says that globally, a fifth of CO2 emitted from fuel combustion comes from industrial processes. That fact leads to their third argument – that for some industrial applications, there are few other ways available today besides CCS to achieve large emission reductions. 

Fourth, ENGO says that we are going to have to actually remove CO2 from the atmosphere to have a chance at avoiding 2 degrees warming.   An available means to do that – already providing 10 per cent of total global primary energy use, according to ENGO - is deploying sustainable biomass energy production with CCS, “such as power plants that co-fire biomass and fossil fuel, combined heat and power plants and a range of flue gas streams from the pulp and paper industry, fermentation in ethanol production and biogas upgrading processes.” 

ENGO says that CCS technology is effective, safe, and available today, enabling the deployment of the technology to begin worldwide “immediately” with the right regulatory oversight.  However, policy shortfalls must be overcome: establishing a price on carbon emissions, much stricter emission performance standards for power plants, and more government funding for R&D and early deployment.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

IEA head: stop funding the climate disruption problem

With international negotiators currently engaged in climate talks and any prospects to keep global temperature rise below 2 degrees Centigrade vanishing rapidly, International Energy Agency Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven has issued an urgent statement calling for swift and comprehensive action by all nations, including the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies.

That will be a tall order for the United States.  Federal government subsidies to fossil fuels between 2002 and 2008 totaled about $72 billion. In 2011 alone, U.S. subsides to the oil, coal and gas industries were the highest of any nation at about $13.1 billion.

And that’s before you factor in the hidden Federal subsidies – exemptions from federal laws, compromised public health, pollution, and little things like aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf and climate disruption.

And there’s yet another layer of subsidies heaped on the fossil fuel industry.  Each year, state, county, and local governments dole out an incredible $80 billion of subsidies to companies in the name of economic development. The fossil fuel industry ranks a shocking third on the list of top recipients.

So much for the mythical free market.

Clearly, radical overhaul of emission reduction policies is needed immediately.  As van der Hoeven says, “Without concerted action soon, the world is on track for a much warmer future with possibly dire consequences.”

Monday, December 3, 2012

Black and Veatch publishes gas industry survey with some surprising numbers

Global engineering, consulting and construction company Black & Veatch (B&V) surveyed natural gas industry participants in July and August, 2012 and has published its first Strategic Directions in the U.S. Natural Gas Industry report.

Here are some of its highlights:

Gas production in the Appalachian Basin, which includes the Marcellus Shale play, nearly doubled in 2012 – “a fivefold increase…in less than five years with no immediate signs of slowing.” There is nearly unanimous agreement among survey respondents that North America has sufficient levels of economically recoverable reserves to serve a growing market through 2030.

Current gas prices are at “unsustainable” levels for all producers and must eventually rise from below $3 per MMBtU (they were about $3.65 late last week) to between $4.50 and $6.00 by 2020.  Survey participants believe that demand for power generation - as well as an overall increase in demand from liquefied natural gas exports, petrochemicals and natural gas vehicles - will be the primary driver for higher gas prices.  However, respondents believe that significant increases in gas demand from electric generation won’t occur until the latter half of this decade, in part due to the industry’s expectation that meaningful climate legislation will pass by then.

B&V has estimated that gas prices below $6.00 MMBtu “will continue to provide power plant operators with capital and operating cost advantages over other power generation fuels and technologies.”  From an increasingly dire climate perspective, that is a number to watch.  The B&V estimate is much higher than the $2.50-$3.25 range that some analysts have said is the tipping point where gas will stop displacing coal and reducing carbon emissions in the U.S..

By a considerable margin, survey respondents ranked safety as the most important long term industry issue.

A significant percentage of North America’s transmission and distribution grid is nearing the end of its service life. B&V says that approximately 60 percent of natural gas transmission pipelines in the U.S. were installed before 1970, and gas distribution systems are typically between 50 and 100 years old. Yet aging infrastructure was ranked by gas survey respondents as only sixth out of 10 top issues.  

B&V noted that an August 2012 survey by Gallup ranked the Oil & Gas industry as having the least positive public image among 25 industries and business sectors.  Which leads us to the next subject – regulation.

Respondents think that regulatory compliance will become more stringent, particularly around hydraulic fracturing. Concerns related to hydraulic fracturing included immediate environmental impacts, impacts to land and water, seismic activity around disposal wells, and climate impacts of leaked methane.  However, the role of smart regulations like those promulgated by U.S. EPA seems to be recognized.  Tellingly, less than half of respondents believe that compliance costs related to gas production will result in modest price increases, and only a third believe costs of compliance could push prices substantially higher.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

MIT study: Methane emissions from fracking lower than thought

A new peer-reviewed study by MIT researchers based on an analysis of 4,000 shale gas wells drilled throughout the U.S. in 2010 says that the amount of methane emissions caused by shale gas production has been largely exaggerated.

The study - Shale gas production: potential versus actual greenhouse gas emissions - found emissions levels closer to U.S. EPA estimates - and apparently higher than some industry claims.  It says that "Although fugitive emissions from the overall natural gas sector are a proper concern, it is incorrect to suggest that shale gas-related hydraulic fracturing has substantially altered the overall GHG intensity of natural gas production."  

The study provides support for the idea that natural gas can be our best available climate stabilization tool and underscores strong support for EPA's new methane emission regulations.

Study: Western public lands a job-generator and lessons for PA

A new report: “West Is Best: How Public Lands in the West Create a Competitive Economic Advantagefinds that the national parks, monuments, wilderness areas and other public lands in 11 western U.S. states - Arizona, Colorado, California, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming - offer a competitive advantage to high-tech and service industries. 

The recreational and cultural opportunities offered by the public lands are are identified by the study as a major reason why the western economy has outperformed the rest of the U.S. economy in key measures of growth–employment, population, and personal income–during the last four decades.  The study found that between 1970 and 2010, these western states grew 52 percent compared to 78 percent for the rest of the country. Health care, real estate, high-tech, and finance and insurance industries created 19.3 million net new jobs in those eleven states over the last four decades. 

Strikingly, the study found that Western non-metropolitan counties with more than 30 percent of the county’s land base in federal protected status such as national parks, monuments, wilderness, and other similar designations increased jobs four times more than counties with no protected public lands.  Jobs in public lands-rich counties grew by 345 percent over the last 40 years, compared to 83 percent job growth in similar counties with no protected federal public lands.  As a result, the study found that per capita income in 2010 in western non-metropolitan counties with 100,000 acres of protected public lands is $4,360 higher than per capita income in similar counties with no protected public lands.

The study says that entrepreneurs and talented workers are choosing to work where they can enjoy outdoor recreation and natural landscapes.  Increasingly, chambers of commerce and economic development associations in every western state are using the region’s public lands as a tool to lure companies to relocate, and high-wage services industries themselves also are using those same lands as recruiting and talent retention tools.

The report echoes previous studies and presents something that Pennsylvania has known and been a national leader in practicing - that conservation is economic development.  The Western report underscores the dramatic economic gains made possible by a commitment to public lands conservation.  But Pennsylvania's documented success - and the potential to duplicate the West's success - is threatened by budget cuts and shale gas development that is already affecting state forests and that could impact state parks

Pennsylvania's 2.5 million acres of state parks and forests must be conserved if we are to grow the state's economy.   

Monday, November 26, 2012

Report: UK CCS could be cost competitive by early 2020s - and proof that the Rendell Administration was ahead of its time on CCS

A task force of the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change has validated an approach to more rapidly deploying carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology that was first explored by Pennsylvania more than four years ago.  The task force says falling costs could allow gas and coal-fired power plants using CCS to produce energy at a comparable cost to other low-carbon generation sources by the early 2020s.

The task force’s report -The Potential for Reducing the Costs of CCS in the UK: Interim Report – says that to achieve these levels of cost reduction, progress in five key areas is essential: 

  • Investment in large carbon storage “clusters” to supply multiple storage sites;
  • Investment in large shared pipelines with high utilization;
  • Investment in large power stations with increased carbon capture capability;
  • Exploitation of synergies with CO2-based enhanced oil recovery (EOR) in the North Sea; and
  • Reduction in the cost of project capital through reduced risk and improved investor confidence

The report was released on the same day that the UK government awarded GBP20 million in funding to 13 carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects.

The report says that an investment in CCS would “enable long-term use of fossil fuels in a carbon-constrained economy, alongside renewable and nuclear power…and to drive UK economic growth, to retain and grow employment opportunities, to protect and grow the UK’s manufacturing base and to gain significant competitive advantage in manufacturing costs over other countries in Europe.”

Scale, shared infrastructure, and an interconnected, right-sized CCS network are keys to achieving the cost reductions projected by the task force.  As the report says: "Both utilisation and scale are important…Multiple large generation plant supplying CO2 to a hub will allow the storage development costs to be shared across large volumes of CO2 stored…The unit costs of transporting CO2 by pipeline decreases as scale increases...Once CCS is established, significant reductions in electricity cost will be available through scaling up” plant sizes.

These are precisely the central tenets of the 2009 Pennsylvania CCS model that was developed with the help of the Clinton Climate Initiative during my tenure at the Department of Conservation and Natural ResourcesDCNR undertook some of the most advanced work on CCS in the nation, including three assessments on the viability of large-scale, integrated commercial CCS network in Pennsylvania: 

The concept was intended to get CCS to scale faster than planned by other state and Federal efforts by capturing both economies of scale through the use of shared infrastructure and the economic development benefits that would accrue to a state in a leadership role in deploying CCS.  While identifying barriers to network development – chiefly the assembly of mineral rights - DCNR found that an integrated, at-scale CCS network would be cost-competitive compared to both proposed and existing international CCS projects.

Governor Rendell and former President Clinton were far ahead of their time on CCS.  The world needs to catch up to them.

November 27 update: This post has also been published by Energy Dimensions.