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Plain Talk: Supreme Court decision may bolster North Dakota's carbon capture projects says industry leader

This ruling "increases the odds that you're going to see carbon capture on some of our projects," says Jason Bohrer, president of the North Dakota Lignite Energy Council.

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Milton R. Young Station, a coal-fired power plant in Oliver County, North Dakota, which is also home of the Project Tundra carbon capture project.
File photo
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MINOT, N.D. — America's industry, from power production to agriculture to manufacturing, needs "to be governed by policymakers not lawsuits."

That's what Jason Bohrer, president of the North Dakota Lignite Energy Council, said on this episode of Plain Talk. He sees the recent Supreme Court decision in North Dakota v. EPA as a boon not just for his industry, but for American democracy in that it will require Congress and other legislative bodies to actually make a decision on what it wants emissions policy to be, instead of punting the question to regulators and judges.

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That's a more transparent process, he argues. A more predictable one. That, in the end, will serve America better.

And while some are arguing that the Supreme Court's finding that the EPA didn't have authority from Congress to regulate emissions in the way it was will endanger the environment, Bohrer sees it as helping.

He argues that projects such as carbon capture, of which there are many here in North Dakota, will be more viable now that they don't have to match pace with a timeline from the EPA that seemed calculated, on a political basis, to be "impossible to meet," according to Bohrer.

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This ruling "increases the odds that you're going to see carbon capture on some of our projects," he claims, and that seems likely.

Which is good news for North Dakota.

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Opinion by Rob Port
Rob Port is a news reporter, columnist, and podcast host for the Forum News Service. He has an extensive background in investigations and public records. He has covered political events in North Dakota and the upper Midwest for two decades. Reach him at rport@forumcomm.com. Click here to subscribe to his Plain Talk podcast.
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