Washington, D.C. — The State of New Jersey is the newest member of the U.S. Department of Energy's Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership program—the centerpiece of national efforts to validate and deploy carbon sequestration technologies. The addition of New Jersey, the 43rd state to join the program, helps strengthen U.S. efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change.
New Jersey—along with Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia—is a regional partner and a participant in the Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (MRCSP) Phase II validation projects. Contributions from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Rutgers University will include building and refining the state's geologic and terrestrial sequestration frameworks, as well as a terrestrial demonstration of forested wetlands.
The Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership program comprises a nationwide association of federal, state, and private-sector partnerships that are determining the most suitable technologies, regulations, and infrastructure for future carbon capture and storage activities in different areas of the country. Launched in 2003, the program is leading national efforts to develop the infrastructure and knowledge base needed to place carbon sequestration technologies on the path to commercialization.
The seven regional partnerships now include more than 350 organizations spanning 43 states, three Indian nations, and four Canadian provinces. The National Energy Technology Laboratory manages the partnerships program for DOE's Office of Fossil Energy.
During the first phase of the program, the seven partnerships characterized the potential for carbon dioxide (CO2) storage in deep geologic formations. When Phase I ended in 2005, the partnerships had identified more than 3,000 billion metric tons of potential storage capacity in promising geologic formations. These formations have the potential to provide more than 1,000 years of storage capacity from point sources throughout North America.
In Phase II of the program, the partnerships are implementing a portfolio of small-scale geologic and terrestrial sequestration projects. The purpose of these projects is to validate that different geologic formations have the receptivity, containment, and storage effectiveness needed for long-term storage.
During Phase III, the partnerships will complete large-volume tests to validate that the capture, transportation, injection, and long term storage of up to one million tons of CO2 per year can be done safely, permanently, and economically.
Efforts in New Jersey will focus on the developing and integrating data on the potential geologic and terrestrial sequestration capacity in the Garden State. Due to the prevalence of off-shore storage opportunities believed to exist in New Jersey, MRSCP will, for the first time, include off-shore reservoirs in its database.
The seven regional partnerships are—
- Big Sky Carbon Sequestration Partnership, led by Montana State University.
- Midwest Geological Sequestration Consortium, headed by the University of Illinois-Illinois State Geological Survey.
- Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership, led by Battelle.
- Plains CO2 Reduction Partnership, led by the Energy & Environmental Research Center at the University of North Dakota.
- Southeast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership, headed by the Southern States Energy Board.
- Southwest Regional Partnership for Carbon Sequestration, led by the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology.
- West Coast Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership, headed by the California Energy Commission.