WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer (R-ND) voiced support for the Trump Administration’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to help businesses utilize carbon capture tax credits at a Senate Budget hearing with Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director nominee Russ Vought today. Senator Cramer addressed the issue with Vought during a call about his nomination last month.

“The current proposal is not perfect, but it’s a big step in the right direction. When we spoke a couple weeks ago, we discussed the importance of getting it done and getting it done right. Thank you for being responsive and not further delaying this important rule,” said Senator Cramer. “As the Administration accepts comments on the proposed rule, I hope your office and Treasury will continue to listen to the comments provided by North Dakotans.”

Senator Cramer has worked with his colleagues on a bipartisan basis to push the Administration to advance these regulations, which were passed by Congress in 2018 as a way to incentivize investment in technology to capture, store, and utilize carbon. Since then, businesses have waited for the Administration to promulgate regulations to ensure they invest properly, which the Treasury Department and the IRS released last Thursday. The Administration officially submitted its proposal to the Federal Register yesterday, where public comments will be accepted until August 3rd before final regulations are issued.

Today, leading energy producers in North Dakota offered their support for the Trump Administration’s proposed rule:

“The Lignite Energy Council would like to thank Senator Cramer for his work on getting the IRS to unveil its proposed 45Q regulations,” said Jason Bohrer, President and CEO of the Lignite Energy Council. “The proposed tax credit will help as companies such as the Minnkota Power Cooperative advance on their Project Tundra project to capture and safely store CO2 permanently underground.”

“Basin Electric appreciates Senator Cramer’s efforts to support implementation of the 45Q tax credit, and we thank the administration for recently releasing the proposed rules. This incentive is critical to advancing carbon capture, utilization, and sequestration technology,” said Paul M. Sukut, CEO and General Manager of Basin Electric Power Cooperative. “We look forward to continue working with Senator Cramer and Treasury to finalize these rules, as well as ensure that they are workable for our industry and encourage the development of projects to achieve meaningful emission reductions.”

“Senator Cramer’s vision for what 45Q credits could be, as opposed to what they’ve been, has been a welcome and critical force. We now have line of sight to a place where Section 45Q can enable exciting new projects,” said John Harju, VP for Strategic Partnerships at the University of North Dakota’s Energy & Environmental Research Center. “Prior to now, the lack of clarity on the program’s requirements and guidelines had largely precluded the widespread use of the program. Senator Cramer’s constant reminder of this need at the Department of Treasury and IRS has undoubtedly helped catalyze this release.”

“North Dakota’s electric cooperatives thank Senator Cramer for his tireless work to provide clarity and guidance on this issue. Carbon capture incentives are critical for our members to continue providing affordable and reliable energy to the region while continuing to reduce carbon emissions and be stewards of the environment,” said Josh Kramer, Executive Vice President and General Manager, North Dakota Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives. “Our member-owned electric cooperatives are leaders and innovators when it comes to  conservation and innovation and we look forward to engaging in discussions about the future of energy, electricity and the environment as the administration continues to make progress on refining the final rule.”

“Minnkota Power Cooperative thanks Senator Cramer for his leadership in advancing the 45Q tax credit and his continued efforts to ensure the IRS guidelines provide a clear path forward for investment in carbon capture technology. 45Q is a vitally important incentive for the Minnkota-led Project Tundra, which aims to build the world’s largest carbon capture system in North Dakota,” said Mac McLennan, President and CEO of Minnkota Power Cooperative. “We are encouraged by the release of the proposed rule by IRS and look forward to continuing work with Senator Cramer to ensure the final version helps Project Tundra secure the support it needs to become a reality.”

Senator Cramer has used his seats on the Senate Banking and Senate Environment and Public Works committees to work with the Administration in moving these regulations forward, including conversations and letters to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

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