Governor Gordon Reacts to PacifiCorp’s Proposal for Carbon Capture Technology Implementation at Jim Bridger Power Plant

Carbon Capture Technology: PacifiCorp’s New Direction in Energy Production

PacifiCorp has recently submitted its update to the 2023 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) to the Wyoming Public Service Commission for review. This IRP outlines the state’s largest utility’s energy sourcing plans for the next two decades, including the installation of carbon capture technology on coal-fired units 3 and 4 at the Jim Bridger Power Plant.

Governor Mark Gordon has responded to this announcement by highlighting the shift in energy planning strategies. He noted that previous IRPs focused solely on phasing out coal-fired power plants entirely. However, concerned with this limited approach, the Wyoming Legislature passed SF159 in 2019, requiring a good faith effort to sell coal units before closure. In 2020, HB200 was enacted, mandating regulated utilities to consider carbon capture technology for coal plants to meet lower CO2 standards under federal regulations and consumer preferences.

Although IRPs are subject to change, PacifiCorp’s decision to prioritize carbon capture for units 3 & 4 reflects the necessity of producing continuous and reliable power. This change in direction is viewed as a positive economic opportunity that benefits Wyoming, its consumers, and those served by PacifiCorp. The integration of carbon capture technology alongside renewable energy sources like wind and solar demonstrates a shift towards more sustainable energy production.

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