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Jul 13, 2016

Tester Fights for Montana Coal Workers and their Families

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(U.S. Senate)-Senator Jon Tester is fighting for coal workers and eastern Montana counties that have been impacted by changing coal and electricity markets.

Tester today introduced legislation to expand the Carbon Capture Tax Credit, which provides tax credits to coal power producers and companies that capture carbon dioxide from their units to be used in enhanced oil recovery or directly stored deep beneath the ground. Tester's legislation, The Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage Act, will incentivize the establishment of new carbon capture and sequestration projects that will provide long-term financial certainty to Montana's coal power producers.

"Coal plays a pivotal role in Montana's energy future," Tester said. "While some folks around the country are turning their backs on coal, I am pushing to expand the Carbon Capture Tax Credit to provide coal country with more financial certainty and encourage American innovation and investments in clean coal technology."

"Mining, transportation, and burning of coal supports thousands of family sustaining jobs in Montana and across our country. We can protect good paying jobs and the communities they support while still addressing human contributions to climate change. Carbon capture is the solution we must invest in if we're going to lead the world in truly limiting the release of greenhouse gases. Senator Tester is fighting for our workers and truly looking for solutions to climate change. Montana workers greatly appreciate his efforts," said Al Ekblad, Executive Secretary of the Montana AFL-CIO.

The Carbon Capture Tax Credit currently provides a $20 per ton tax credit to companies that capture and sequester carbon dioxide or a $10 per ton credit for carbon dioxide that is captured and used for enhanced oil recovery. A facility must capture at least 500,000 tons of carbon dioxide annually to qualify for the tax credit. That credit will expire once 75 million tons have been claimed.

Tester's bill will increase the tax credit over time to $35 per ton for utilization and $50 per ton for storage for new carbon capture projects, and lower the qualifying threshold to 100,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year.

Carbon capture and sequestration projects that begin construction within the next seven years will qualify for the expanded Carbon Capture Tax Credit and will be eligible to claim the tax credit for 12 years once the facility is operational.

The Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage Act will make carbon capture projects more economically viable for coal-fired power plants like Colstrip as consumers increasingly seek cleaner electricity. The bill also makes the credit available to other industries and helps ensure that carbon dioxide can be put to good use for other energy development while reducing overall carbon emissions.

Tester joined with Senators Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) to introduce the bill.

Office Contact Information

Senator Tester's Montana staff serves the state from offices in Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Glendive, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell, and Missoula. Please bring your concerns with federal agencies, academy nominations, and other situations to one of these Montana offices.

Billings

Judge Jameson Federal Building
2900 4th Ave N, Suite 201
Billings, MT 59101
Phone: (406) 252-0550
Fax: (406) 252-7768

Bozeman

Avant Courier Building
1 E Main Street, Suite 202
Bozeman, MT 59715
Phone: (406) 586-4450
Fax: (406) 586-7647

Butte

Silver Bow Center
125 W Granite, Suite 200
Butte, MT 59701
Phone: (406) 723-3277
Fax: (406) 782-4717

Glendive

122 W Towne
Glendive, MT 59330
Phone: (406) 365-2391
Fax: (406) 365-8836

Great Falls

119 1st Avenue N, Suite 102
Great Falls, MT 59401
Phone: (406) 452-9585
Fax: (406) 452-9586

Helena

Capital One Center
208 N Montana Avenue, Suite 202
Helena, MT 59601
Phone: (406) 449-5401
Fax: (406) 449-5462

Kalispell

8 Third Street E
Kalispell, MT 59901
Phone: (406) 257-3360
Fax: (406) 257-3974

Missoula

130 W Front St.
Missoula, MT 59802
Phone: (406) 728-3003
Fax: (406) 728-2193

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