Residents of several parishes continued to battle carbon capture injection wells Thursday night, imposing two moratoriums aimed at slowing the technology’s impact in their communities.
The Livingston Parish Council has passed a one-year temporary moratorium on “Class VI” injection wells used to store carbon, approving a similar moratorium on so-called “Class V wells” — used to inject non-hazardous fluids.
Although Class V wells have multiple uses, the council has opposed their use as test wells exclusively for exploring geological formations prior to CO2 injection. This process, the company’s data-gathering step, happens before carbon capture wells are approved for use.
in nearby St. Helena, council members voted for a moratorium on carbon capture injection wells, as Livingston Parish did in early September.
“I think it’s safer for our parish now to accept the damage we don’t know it’s going to cause in 5, 10 years, so I think the best thing is that it does pass,” said the Acting Police Jury for the Parish of St. Helena Chairman Ryan Bird said after the meeting.
He added that despite rumors that companies are eyeing St. Petersburg, the parish does not yet have any formal carbon capture projects. Helena of Future Projects let them pass the moratorium as a safety precaution.
Carbon capture and storage is the process by which industrial plants capture their carbon dioxide emissions and then bury them in injection wells deep underground.
Livingston Parish is considering two carbon capture projects.
Oxy Low Carbon Ventures, a subsidiary of Occidental Petroleum, plans to build a carbon sequestration facility near the Holden area. Company officials said they hope to have the facility online by 2025.
Air Products plans to build a blue hydrogen production plant near the Burnside area of Ascension Parish to extract methane from natural gas. The carbon dioxide produced during this process is captured and pressure is applied to turn it into a liquid. This liquid will be injected into the well in St. Livingston. James, St. Parish of John the Baptist and Tangi Paho.
State lands for the project will include the Morepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area and Morepas Lake — a plan that has left many Livingston and Tangipaho parishioners in an uproar.
Kinion Bankston, a resident from the Albany area who has been a strong opponent of carbon capture, implored the council to consider how the wells could negatively impact crab catchers and fishermen on the lake who could lose their jobs, as well as the value of family property and tourism in the area and parish. Industry.
“Guys, this is not a great project for Lake Morepas,” he said. “There is nothing in Livingston Parish. We have lost everything from this project and gained nothing.”
Others echoed Bankston, expressing concerns about their families and safety, anxiety about the unknown of technology, and fears that it would disrupt their way of life.
“As a community, we don’t want our community to become an industrial dump,” Houghton resident Duane Mitchell said.
An Oxy representative said during the meeting that a permit for a Class V well had been issued for the Holden plant. Two more are planned for Lake Morepas, according to an Air Products spokesperson.
Air Products spokesman Andrew Connolly reiterated that carbon capture is safe and proven, and his company “can do it safely and consistently and transparently.”
“My commitment to this project tonight is to be open and transparent to all of you,” he said. “We’ve been doing this in Louisiana since the mid-’60s. We have 18 facilities up and down the river.”
Brian Landry, vice president of political affairs for the Louisiana Chemical Society, also opposed the moratorium and said Louisiana could become a global leader in reducing emissions through the technology.
“We are concerned that any proposed delay, especially in the V-class wells … will have a chilling effect,” he said.
Two council members, Garry “Frog” Talbert and Tracy Girlinghouse, voted against the suspension. Talbot brought up a letter sent by the parish attorney to the council suggesting they could be prosecuted over the wording of the ordinance, which is meant to regulate what happens at the bottom of Lake Morepas, which is not theirs. within the jurisdiction.
The moratorium covers wells dedicated to “geological testing of rock formations, monitoring, drilling or injection of carbon dioxide for long-term storage.” It also includes “explosives for seismic testing, drilling, or injecting fluids into Class V wells.”
According to federal guidelines, CO2 cannot be injected into Class V wells unless a Class VI license is obtained.