This week the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) released “Carbon Capture Utilization and Sequestration Guidance” requesting comments by March 18, 2022. The guidance was also announced in a White House statement titled “Fact Sheet: Biden-Harris Administration Advances Cleaner Industrial Sector to Reduce Admissions and Reinvigorate American Manufacturing.” The interim guidance is designed “to facilitate efficient, orderly and responsible deployment of CCUS.” It provides federal agencies with a framework for regulation and permitting of carbon capture, utilization and sequestration (CCUS) activities in the United States and further reiterates the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to increasing support for CCUS research, development, demonstration and deployment (RDD&D); enhancing the Section 45Q tax incentive; and ensuring that CCUS technologies are informed by community perspectives and are consistent with the Administration's climate, public health, and economic goals.
The guidance is consistent with the Utilizing Significant Emissions with Innovative Technologies (USE IT) Act and builds on CEQ’s June 2021 CCUS report. Specifically, it considers the following:
- Sound and transparent environmental reviews for CCUS projects
- Incorporation of environmental justice and equity considerations to protect overburdened communities from any direct, indirect and cumulative impacts
- Meaningful public engagement and Tribal consultations from early in the process
- Opportunities to create good-paying, union jobs and training programs
- Life cycle analyses of CCU and carbon dioxide removal (CDR) projects.