Kuster, Bipartisan Group of Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Develop Technology to Remove Carbon Dioxide from the Atmosphere
Washington, October 23, 2020
Today, Representatives Annie Kuster (D-NH), David McKinley (R-WV), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH), Scott Peters (D-CA), Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE), Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ), David Schweikert (R-AZ) and Diana DeGette (D-CO) introduced the Carbon Removal, Efficient Agencies, Technology Expertise (CREATE) Act. This bipartisan legislation authorizes a whole-of-government approach to research, develop, and demonstrate carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technology. The bill achieves this goal by directing federal agencies to include the development of CDR as part of their annual budget requests and ensure this work is coordinated across the federal government.
According to the 2019 United Nations Emissions Gap Report, reducing future carbon emissions alone cannot prevent global temperatures from rising beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius, which is the maximum increase we can withstand before we begin to experience the worst impacts of climate change. We must also reduce the level of carbon dioxide (CO2) – one of the primary greenhouse gases – that is already in the atmosphere. CDR technology removes CO2 from the atmosphere, helping to prevent climate change and mitigate its impacts.
“Climate change is an existential threat to our national security, our society, and the future of our planet,” said Rep. Kuster. “In order to prevent the worst effects, we must dramatically reduce the carbon in our atmosphere. Carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technology has the potential to help achieve this goal and the government should vigorously pursue it. I am excited to advance this legislation as part of my larger clean energy agenda to curb climate change and help us transition to a clean energy economy.”
“Congress must do more to encourage innovation to develop the next generation of clean energy technologies, like carbon capture, direct air capture, and negative emissions technologies,” said Rep. McKinley. “Our bipartisan bill will support coordination across the federal government as we look to use our energy resources in the cleanest way possible and remove carbon from the atmosphere.”
“The fires, floods and hurricanes that are raging across our nation make clear that climate change is not a future problem, but an urgent threat that is devastating our infrastructure, economy and the lives of millions of Americans,” said Rep. Tonko said. “We need to use every tool possible to rise to this challenge, and carbon dioxide removal must be part of this comprehensive approach. The CREATE Act delivers that needed federal coordination in research and development of technologies and techniques that can reduce and remove carbon dioxide emissions from the atmosphere. I am proud to join my colleagues in cosponsoring this vital legislation.”
“We have to invest in innovative solutions that remove carbon from our atmosphere,” said Rep. Peters. “The CREATE Act would direct our government’s top-notch experts and resources towards the research, development and deployment of various CDR technologies to tackle carbon pollution. Carbon removal is critical to curbing climate change. I am pleased to join my colleagues in this bipartisan effort.”
"I’m proud to back the bipartisan CREATE Act, an innovative approach to carbon capture that will yield huge dividends for our environmental security. Carbon capture technology can reduce carbon already in the atmosphere," said Congressman Jeff Fortenberry, Ranking Member, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, and Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
“Over the last decade, we have seen the increasingly severe effects of our changing planet, underscoring the urgent need for action to both address climate change head on and work to reverse existing damage,” said Rep. O’Halleran. “I am proud to join this commonsense legislation that will streamline, coordinate, and accelerate the implementation of carbon dioxide removal technology in order to preserve our environment and work towards a more sustainable future.”
“I am pleased to join this bipartisan bill to coordinate research and demonstration of carbon dioxide removal technology,” said Rep. Schweikert. “I have been a strong proponent of direct air capture technologies, as Arizona has been a national leader in innovative carbon removal technologies research. Eventually scaling up these technologies will ensure Arizonans will have a cleaner environment and stronger economy in the future.“
“Removing the excess carbon dioxide in our air will be critical to restoring a healthy balance for our climate, and it will take coordination across our government to make it happen,” said Roger Ullman, Executive Director of LTC Action. “This important bill will ensure that takes place.”
“BPC Action supports the Carbon Removal, Efficient Agencies, Technology Expertise (CREATE) Act introduced by Reps. Kuster (D-NH), McKinley (R-WV), Tonko (D-NY), Gonzalez (R-OH), Peters (D-CA), Fortenberry (R-NE), O’Halleran (D-AZ), Schweikert (R-AZ), and DeGette (D-CO), which would boost the effectiveness of carbon removal federal programs to scale-up direct air capture, soil, forest, and ocean solutions areas effectively. The bill will help reduce carbon emissions, generate socioeconomic opportunities across the country, and advance the United States as a world leader in this emerging field,” said Michele Stockwell, Executive Director, BPC Action
Carbon removal solutions are necessary to meet global climate goals, but realizing their potential will require a collaborative multi-agency, economy-wide approach,” said Noah Deich, Executive Director, Carbon180. “The Carbon Removal, Efficient Agencies, Technology Expertise (CREATE) Act will ensure there is a strategic plan for the United States to quickly and robustly scale carbon removal solutions across sectors, providing us the best chance to both meet climate goals and access abundant economic benefits."
“Complementing mitigation efforts, carbon removal is expected to help us to achieve net-zero emissions by mid-century. CATF welcomes the bipartisan Carbon Removal, Efficient Agencies, Technology Expertise (CREATE) Act to enable a coordinated and strategic near-term scale-up and commercialization of carbon removal, as well as related infrastructure. Climate-forward innovation and investment in advanced climate technologies like carbon removal will not only help to realize economic opportunities and societal benefits, but will also contribute to reaching our climate goals,” said Lee Beck, CCUS Policy Innovation Director, Clean Air Task Force.
“The United States needs to stay focused on aggressive action to cut greenhouse gas emissions. At the same time, we recognize the need for carbon removal technologies in order to reach the goal of net zero emissions across the economy by 2050 and avert the worst impact of climate change. EDF thanks Reps. Kuster (D-NH), McKinley (R-WV), Tonko (D-NY), Gonzalez (R-OH), Peters (D-CA), Fortenberry (R-NE), O’Halleran (D-AZ), Schweikert (R-AZ), and DeGette (D-CO) for their leadership in introducing the Carbon Removal, Efficient Agencies, Technology Expertise (CREATE) Act, an important bipartisan bill that coordinates efforts across the federal government to research, develop, and demonstrate these crucial technologies,” said EDF statement of Elizabeth Gore, Senior Vice President, Political Affairs.
“The CREATE Act is the need of the hour when it comes to fighting climate change. We need to develop, test and bring carbon removal technologies down the cost curve now to be able to remove the massive levels of CO2 required to keep global temperatures from rising beyond 2C,” said Dr. Jan Mazurek at the ClimateWorks Foundation.
A PDF of the bill text is available here.