Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon Launches WGA Chair Initiative

Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon launched his WGA Chair initiative, Decarbonizing the West, on Sept. 21 in Gillette, Wyoming. During his opening remarks, he called on the West to put politics aside and unite in the name of decarbonization.    

"There really is no challenge I can see that is more important for us to address responsibly, thoughtfully, and most importantly, honestly, than climate change - and that is what this initiative is about," Governor Gordon told the crowd at Gillette College. "If we can change the conversation from fossil [energy] bad, renewable [energy] good, to what do we do to make things work better, what do we do to reduce carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, what are our opportunities to grow our economy... We have a better shot of addressing this issue and leading the global charge."

The workshop also convened federal, state, local, and industry stakeholders from around the West to discuss various aspects of carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) including federal programs, regulatory implications, and technology implementation.

To watch a recording of the panels, simply click on the titles below. 

And be sure to check back in with WGA in the coming weeks, or sign up for the Association’s newsletter, for additional speaker announcements about Decarbonizing the West Initiative.

Initiative Kick Off and Opening Remarks

Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon

Department of Energy Carbon Management Briefing with Brad Crabtree

In recent years, landmark federal legislation such as the IIJA and Inflation Reduction Act have created significant opportunities for the research and development of carbon management technologies, resulting in the largest investment into carbon management and commercialization provisions in decades. Brad Crabtree, Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy and Carbon Management, spoke with Governor about the federal landscape for carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS), and ongoing DOE efforts to advance carbon capture technology development and implementation.

Regulatory Implications for CCUS

Federal regulations including financial incentives and tax credits, leasing and siting, and well permitting for carbon storage create a complex regulatory landscape for CCUS development. Panelists examined regulatory barriers that impede the research, development, and implementation of CCUS and other carbon dioxide removal technologies in the west.

Panelists: Matt Fry, Senior Policy Analyst, Great Plains Institute, Tara Righetti, Occidental Professor of Energy and Environmental Policy, University of Wyoming, Stephen Fusilier, HQ Branch Chief, Rights-of-Way, Bureau of Land Management, Todd Parfitt, Director, Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality. 

Moderated by: Randall Luthi, Chief Energy Advisor, Office of Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon

CCUS Technology Showcase

Wyoming’s Integrated Test Center (ITC) is a research facility established to support the development of advanced carbon capture, utilization, and storage technologies by providing a real-world testing environment for organizations and researchers working on innovative carbon dioxide removal in the industrial sector. For this panel ITC technology vendors provided a technical overview of ITC projects and discussed the challenges and opportunities for CCUS development in western states.

Panelists: Yutaro Hara, Assistant Manager, CCUS Section, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Brice Freeman, Director of Carbon Capture, Membrane Technology and Research, Ambal Jayaraman, Principal Engineer, TDA Research, Howard Meyer, Senior Institute Engineer, GTI Energy.

Moderated by: Will Morris, Technical Director, Integrated Test Center

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