Senate OKs Framework for Carbon Capture Sequestration

HARRISBURG – The state Senate today approved Senate Bill 831 to establish the legal and regulatory framework for potential carbon dioxide capture, utilization, and sequestration (CCUS) in Pennsylvania, according to Sen. Gene Yaw (R-23), sponsor of the measure.

“This legislation is a proactive step to secure Pennsylvania’s future as a hub for carbon capture and sequestration,” Sen. Yaw said. “It’s a pragmatic solution to a problem that we all want to solve – reducing our carbon emissions without crippling the reliability of our existing power grid.”

Currently, only the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) claims authority for CCUS, a process that removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere emitted from industrial sites for reuse or storage underground. The Great Plains Institute, using data from a 2009 Department of Conservation and Natural Resources report, estimates the state could store about 2.4 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide underground. This is equivalent to the level of greenhouse gases emitted from 517 million gas-powered passenger vehicles annually, according to the EPA.

Yaw noted Senate Bill 831 has received support from the Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry, as well as the Greater Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce. It is also supported by the Pennsylvania State Building and Construction Trades Council, the Allegheny-Fayette County Labor Council, the Pittsburgh Regional Building Trades Council, the AFL-CIO, and numerous other labor groups and industry representatives.

“Carbon capture technology has the potential to create a significant number of good paying jobs in the construction industry while simultaneously creating family-sustaining permanent jobs for the citizens of our commonwealth,” Robert Bair, Pennsylvania State Building and Construction Trades Council president said. 

“Pennsylvania is uniquely qualified to develop a vast CCUS network, thanks to our robust energy industry and extensive geological formations,” Yaw said. “We should act now to establish a solid regulatory framework that will attract investment and development and economic opportunity for decades to come.”

The bill now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.

For more state-related news and information, constituents can visit Senator Yaw’s website at or follow him on Facebook and Twitter @SenatorGeneYaw.

Elizabeth Weitzel

Back to Top