As Minnesota confronts financial challenges starting from rising inflation, provide chain deficiencies, workforce shortages and extra, it’s more and more essential that we discover methods to assist and develop our crucial industries.

On the high of the listing is agriculture and ethanol. Corn manufacturing alone generates $7.5 billion in annual financial worth to our state, whereas ethanol helps 22,000 jobs and contributes $2.1 billion to Minnesota’s gross home product yearly. These two industries go hand-in-hand, as ethanol producers buy roughly 40% of all of the corn grown in Minnesota.

There are, after all, some who wish to get rid of the ethanol trade and basically alter the best way through which farmers function. Summit Carbon Options doesn’t share that view and our carbon seize, transportation, and storage undertaking was initiated to open new financial alternatives for ethanol producers, strengthen the agricultural market for farmers, and generate tens of hundreds of thousands of {dollars} in new revenues for native communities throughout the Midwest.

The undertaking, nevertheless, has been the topic of a variety of misinformation, together with a current visitor opinion in MinnPost.

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The authors argue that carbon seize initiatives are usually not what farmers and rural communities “want.” Once more, we take the other view. Summit Carbon Options is partnering with 32 ethanol crops throughout the Midwest, together with six in Minnesota. By way of this funding, these ethanol producers will have the ability to promote their product at a premium within the rising variety of states and international locations which have adopted low carbon gasoline requirements. Accessing these markets is completely important to sustaining the competitiveness of the ethanol trade together with its means to proceed buying 40% of the corn grown in Minnesota and the constructive influence that gives to land values throughout the state.

As for its broader influence on rural communities, it’s essential to notice that Summit Carbon Options will make investments a median of $54 million in every of the counties in Minnesota the place the undertaking will function – {dollars} that can assist suppliers and native companies throughout the state to generate extra financial progress. Furthermore, the corporate pays a median of $1.2 million in new property taxes in those self same counties to assist native communities assist our colleges, roads, public security officers, and extra.

For many who wish to see significant steps taken to fight local weather change, carbon seize is a crucial step we are able to take to realize that purpose. A current third-party examine famous that, “scientists estimate that limiting warming to 1.5 levels Celsius would cut back the chances of initiating essentially the most harmful and irreversible results of local weather change” and “the quantity of CO2 captured through (carbon seize, use and storage) annually must multiply by greater than 125 instances by 2050 from 2016 ranges, to make sure that emissions keep inside the 1.5-degree-pathway.” Nobody is arguing that our undertaking alone will fight local weather change by itself. Nevertheless, nobody can plausibly argue that we are able to attain bold environmental targets like web zero emissions with out carbon seize and storage.

Regardless of what some could say, these programs make the most of longstanding and confirmed applied sciences. Greater than 40 ethanol crops have carbon seize programs right this moment. There are 3.3 million miles of pipeline working in the USA, together with 71,000 miles in Minnesota alone, working below the strict and complete rules of the Pipeline and Hazardous Supplies Security Administration. And sequestration has been studied by researchers, scientists, and engineers who’ve discovered it to be protected, together with the U.S. Division of Vitality who famous, “CCUS (carbon seize, utilization, and storage) initiatives supported by DOE and different organizations around the globe, which in 2019 injected greater than 25 million metric tons of CO2, have proven no adversarial impacts to human well being or the surroundings.”

Having partnered with 2,000 Midwest landowners to signal 3,200 easement agreements, we look ahead to persevering with to carry public occasions and one-on-one conferences to debate our undertaking, evaluation these advantages and have a fact-based dialog round any questions or considerations associated to this funding. For these with questions, we hope you’ll go to www.SummitCarbonSolutions.com.

Scott O’Konek is a senior undertaking supervisor with Summit Carbon Options Minnesota.

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