After a leak in Sulphur, Louisiana, experts and residents express grave concerns about the fossil fuel industry’s carbon capture plans — and its mounting efforts to curb federal oversight.

by Emily Sanders, ExxonKnews

carbon dioxide pipeline rupture in the small village of Satartia, Mississippi, sent nearly 50 people to the hospital with “zombie”-like conditions in 2020, and now another major leak from a pipeline in Sulphur, Louisiana, has once again exposed the risks carbon dioxide pipelines pose to communities in their path.

Soon, pipelines like this could be coming to cities and towns throughout the country. Spurred by federal tax incentives from the Biden Administration, the fossil fuel industry is planning to build tens of thousands of miles of carbon dioxide (CO2) pipelines across the United States for experimental carbon capture and storage — a process aimed at sequestering carbon emissions from power plants, sending it through pipelines, and injecting it underground.

nord stream 2 pipeline

While regulators are working to craft updated safety rules for these pipelines, major fossil fuel companies and their trade groups — including Chevron, ConocoPhillips, the American Petroleum Institute, and the Liquid Energy Pipeline Association — have launched a lobbying blitz to scale back regulations and target the regulators themselves so they can construct new pipelines as quickly as possible.

Carbon dioxide is an asphyxiant. Upon entering the atmosphere during a pipeline leak or rupture, it can travel long distances, shut down vehicles, and sicken, suffocate, or even kill people and wildlife.

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