Navigator CO2 Ventures Seeks Pause in Iowa Permit Process for 1,300-Mile Carbon Pipeline

(Reuters) — Navigator CO2 Ventures has asked Iowa regulators to pause the permit application process for its carbon capture and storage (CCS) pipeline project that will run across five U.S. Midwest states as it awaits approval in Illinois, where its carbon storage site would be located.

On Friday, Navigator asked the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) to pause its application until after the company receives a decision from regulators in Illinois, where it hopes to store 15 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from industrial plants to be buried underground, or sequestered, in Illinois.

Navigator plans to run the Heartland Greenway pipeline 1,300 miles (2092 km) across South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota and Illinois, with 810 miles of that in Iowa.

The Nebraska-based company, along with Summit Carbon Solutions and Wolf Carbon Solutions are proposing three multi-state carbon pipelines — key tests for the viability of CCS, a pillar of the Biden administration's climate agenda. They have, however, have faced several permit denials from state officials.

The company said in its IUB filing that the pause would conserve resources because its route in Iowa could change in light of recent regulatory decisions in other states and requests from landowners along its proposed route.

Navigator in February restarted its Illinois permit process after its first attempt failed because the company did not sign enough agreements with residents living over the proposed storage site. The Illinois Commerce Commission must rule on Navigator's current application by Feb. 29, 2024.

South Dakota regulators denied Navigator's permit application in September, citing concerns about the pipeline's safety, the company's transparency, and a lack of support from landowners.

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