By Bob Beck
Washington, DC – The state of Wyoming says surface landowners own what are called "pore spaces" - the underground chambers where carbon is stored during carbon sequestration. Now Senator John Barrasso is proposing a similar idea on the federal level.
Barrasso has drafted a bill that says the federal government owns pore spaces below federal land. Determining who owns the pore space is important because that entity is liable if carbon dioxide leaks out from the space. Barrasso says his bill provides certainty to private companies that want to get into carbon sequestration. He adds that the legislation is important to Western states, where so much of the land is federal. Carbon sequestration is a process where carbon and other greenhouse gases are stored underground. The process could help make the coal industry cleaner. Barrasso says this is an important step in making American energy clean, affordable and reliable.