Hoeven Working to Bring Allam Cycle to North Dakota, Secure the Future of Energy Development

Senator Outlines Efforts to Develop CCS for Traditional & Renewable Fuels, Provide Regulatory Relief

BISMARCK, N.D. – At the EmPower ND Energy Conference today, Senator John Hoeven today outlined his efforts to ensure the robust development of all of America’s energy resources. The senator stressed the importance of innovation and new technologies to produce more energy with better environmental stewardship, which lowers costs for consumers and businesses while also providing good jobs and energy security for the nation. Hoeven hosts the annual energy conference, now in its 10th year, with North Dakota’s congressional delegation and governor, Bismarck State College, Great Plains Energy Corridor, KLJ and the North Dakota Department of Commerce. 

“Our energy plan, Empower North Dakota, has been all about making our state a leader in energy development, both in traditional and renewable energy,” said Hoeven. “By combining the right kind of pro-growth policies with technology development, we have positioned our state at the forefront of the nation’s energy future. That’s why we continue to promote projects like the Allam Cycle and secure the funding and support from federal officials we need to develop this technology right here in North Dakota. At the same time, we are working to bring those same policies that made our state an energy leader to the federal level, like providing a cost-effective regulatory environment.”   

Developing Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) Technology

Hoeven’s ongoing work dovetails with this year’s keynote speaker, NET Power CEO Bill Brown. NET Power is currently operating a demonstration project in LaPorte, Texas, for the Allam Cycle, technology to reduce CO2 emissions and increase efficiency in new coal-fired and natural gas power plants. The senator is supporting the efforts of the Energy and Environmental Research Center (EERC) at the University of North Dakota (UND) and others to bring this technology to North Dakota and also develop Project Tundra, a full-plant scrubbing technology project to retrofit existing plants to capture CO2. To this end, Hoeven has secured a commitment from Energy Secretary Rick Perry to support CCS projects like these and continues working to provide funding through the Energy Appropriations Committee to advance efforts to reduce emissions for both traditional and renewable fuels. 

In fact, Hoeven successfully included $6 million in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 funding bill for the design and testing of a commercially-viable carbon capture project at the coal-fueled plant, like Project Tundra. At the same time, Hoeven secured regulatory primacy for North Dakota over Class VI injection wells, which are used for the geologic or long-term storage of CO2, the first such approval in the nation. This authority will help advance CCS projects across the state, including the one at Red Trail Energy’s ethanol plant in Richardton, which will enable the company to sell its ethanol to states that have emission requirements for fuels, like California. This work is further supported by Hoeven’s recent reintroduction of the CO2 Regulatory Certainty Act, legislation that aligns tax guidelines with existing federal regulations at the EPA to ensure CCS project developers can use the Section 45Q tax credit.

Advancing Regulatory Relief

In addition to supporting new innovations in energy production, Hoeven continues to advance regulatory relief for the nation’s energy developers. His recent efforts include:

  • Stopping the Waters of the U.S. Rule  Hoeven worked through the Appropriations Committee to defund the regulation in 2016 and 2017. EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recently issued a proposal to restore the regulations that were in place prior to WOTUS, which was issued in 2015. This is the first of two steps established by the executive order signed by the president in February.
  • Repealing the Stream Buffer Rule – Hoeven helped introduce and pass legislation to rescind the one-size-fits-all Stream Buffer Rule, which was primarily based on mining practices in the Appalachian region and threatened to eliminate thousands of mining jobs.
  • Rolling Back Burdensome Regulations – Hoeven joined the President and Interior Secretary to implement executive orders and begin rolling back regulations that hamper domestic energy production, including the EPA’s costly rules for coal-generating power plants, the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) hydraulic fracturing rule for federal lands, BLM’s methane rule and the moratorium on federal coal leasing. The senator also cosponsored and voted for a resolution to repeal the BLM methane rule, for which the administration has proposed a three-year delay while it works to review and rescind the rule.
  • Rescinding BLM “Planning 2.0” – Hoeven cosponsored and helped pass a resolution under the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to repeal the rule. This maintained multiple-use requirements for federal lands, including energy development.