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Biggest coal-based carbon capture project in the world underway in ND

Senator John Hoeven joined energy leaders in Beulah
Senator John Hoeven joined energy leaders in Beulah(KFYR-TV)
Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 8:34 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Senator John Hoeven joined energy leaders in Beulah on Thursday to announce a big step for the coal industry in North Dakota. The carbon capture project has big implications for North Dakota’s energy future.

Senator Hoeven, Basin Electric Power Cooperative, and the Dakota Gastrification Company announced the development of the biggest coal-based carbon capture project in the world, happening at the Great Plains Synfuels Plant in Beulah.

Carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) is a technology that traps excess carbon from coal processing. Senator Hoeven says North Dakota is uniquely prepared for carbon capture.

“You’ve gotta have that legal tax and regulatory environment so that you can do it, and you have to have the geology to do it. Right? You can’t just do it anywhere. We have the geology here,” said Senator Hoeven.

The Beulah Synfuels plant should be ready to begin carbon capture operations by next summer.

Carbon capture is attractive to environmental groups because it reduces the amount of CO2 that’s released into the atmosphere. Another attractive aspect of carbon capture? Jobs.

“It’s really, really easy to fight for a cause that affects so many people so personally with the over 1500 jobs just locally here in this community because of these facilities, but also for everyone else who benefits from the reliable electricity that they’ll have in the cold months of January,” said State Senator Jessica Bell, from Beulah.

The site will be able to capture as much as one and half million metric tons of carbon, in addition to the two million tons of carbon it currently uses for enhanced oil recovery.

There’s no official price tag yet, but the project is expected to cost tens of millions of dollars. Energy leaders anticipate a huge potential for the future of carbon capture in North Dakota.

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