FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 8, 2023
Sangamon County Board Passes Resolutions to Oppose Navigator’s CO2 Pipeline Project Following Largest Showing of Public Opposition Yet
SPRINGFIELD, IL. -- Tonight, the Sangamon County Board passed a resolution to oppose approval of any CO2 pipeline projects in Sangamon County at both the State and the Federal level and a resolution expanding the existing moratorium to include a moratorium on CO2 sequestration. The Sangamon County Board’s vote comes less than a month after nearly 500 people packed the Bank of Springfield Convention Center to voice their opposition to the project, citing concerns about safety, destruction of farmland, and risks to drinking water. Nearly seventy people attended the board meeting this evening to yet again demonstrate their opposition to CCS projects like Navigator’s supposed “greenway.”
The moratorium will prevent CO2 pipeline and sequestration projects from being constructed in Sangamon County until December 31, 2023. The moratorium allows time for the Illinois General Assembly to consider legislation that will regulate modeling, setbacks, and other critical safety measures during Illinois’ veto session this fall. The moratorium also protects Sangamon County while the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) continues to complete its rule-making process, which will include new safety measures and improved oversight.
In response to the passage of these resolutions, the Coalition to Stop CO2 Pipelines released the following statement:
“The expansion of the existing CO2 pipeline moratorium is a critical step to protect residents while we await federal and state regulations on CCS projects,” said Kathy Campbell, a Sangamon County landowner and member of the Coalition to Stop CO2 Pipelines. “It would be ludicrous to allow Navigator to construct a pipeline that would transport liquified CO2, which is an asphyxiant, less than 2,000 feet from my house without improved safety and oversight. We need improved modeling and public disclosure of modeling results so that we can ensure a CO2 pipeline’s route will, in the event of a rupture, be set back far enough to keep communities, rural residences, and sensitive land uses safe. The Sangamon County Board’s passage of these resolutions today gives us time to fight for regulations on the federal and state levels that will protect us from the hazards of CCS projects.”
“We applaud the Sangamon County Board for prioritizing the lives and safety of residents, particularly amidst Navigator’s continued attempts to buy our support,” said Nick Dodson, Springfield resident and Chair of the Sangamon Valley Group of Sierra Club Illinois. “Last month’s Public Forum was the largest public rejection of carbon capture projects yet in Illinois. It’s obvious that Sangamon County residents are deeply skeptical of carbon capture projects and understand that stronger regulations are needed at every step of the CCS industrial cycle–from the point of capture, along pipeline routes, and at the storage site. We need all county governments along Navigator’s proposed route, legislators in the General Assembly, and utilities considering carbon capture projects like Springfield’s City Water Power & Light to understand the public’s concern with these projects and the need for better public health and environmental protections.”
Coalition to Stop CO2 Pipelines
The Coalition to Stop CO2 Pipelines is a growing coalition of Illinois environmental groups, landowners, and residents concerned about the environmental, economic, and the unprecedented safety hazards associated with building a network of CO2 pipelines across the state. The coalition believes the mad rush to build these pipelines as part of the technology called carbon capture and sequestration is dangerous and a false solution that will keep Illinois reliant on fossil fuels.