Net Zero Emissions

Multidisciplinary approach to scientific and engineering research on Net Zero Emissions technological innovations, coupled with crosscutting work on policy, markets, and regulation

Multidisciplinary approach to scientific and engineering research on CCUS technological innovations, coupled with crosscutting work on policy, markets, and regulation

Net Zero Emissions is a technology that can be applied across the energy system. The Colorado School of Mines has directly relevant science and technology expertise that spans from fundamental chemistry through reactor engineering. There are on the order of 30-50 faculty actively engaged with areas related to one or more aspects of the Net Zero Emissions chain.

Most, if not all, CO2 reduction to fuels or chemicals depends on catalytic hydrogenation or dehydrogenation processes. Thus, the design, synthesis, and implementation of selective catalysts are essential aspects of CO2 utilization for the production of value-added chemicals. As a practical matter, cost-effective and timely technology development depends on closely coordinated multidisciplinary research and engineering.

Through collaboration and research Colorado School of Mines and the Payne Institute are connecting the technical expertise on campus related to Net Zero Emissions with industry, government and civil society to increase awareness of the opportunities related to CCUS. Maintaining the focus of the University as a leader at the frontiers of science and engineering, related to earth, energy and environmental stewardship.

NEWS

The cleaning of U.S. natural gas; evolution of differentiated gas and related crediting mechanisms 2/15/24

The cleaning of U.S. natural gas; evolution of differentiated gas and related crediting mechanisms

Payne Institute Sustainable Finance Lab Program Manager Brad Handler and Student Researcher Felix Ayaburi write about the concept of differentiated gas, the emerging role of crediting mechanisms in promoting its adoption, and the prospects for demand growth and its evolution.  After rapid growth in the supply of U.S. differentiated gas through late 2021 and 2022, demand is rising from domestic utilities and industry as well as European energy companies. February 15, 2024.

TRANSPARENCY THROUGH TECHNOLOGY: THE VITAL LINK BETWEEN MONITORING AND PUBLIC PERCEPTION IN CCS INITIATIVES 2/9/24

TRANSPARENCY THROUGH TECHNOLOGY: THE VITAL LINK BETWEEN MONITORING AND PUBLIC PERCEPTION IN CCS INITIATIVES

Payne Institute CCUS Program Manager Anna Littlefield and Project Canary’s Charlie Losche write about how the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 has catalyzed significant growth in CCS, with projections indicating a substantial increase in capture capacity by 2035.  With this expansion comes challenges, notably in securing Class VI permits for CO2 injection, and most pressingly in maintaining public trust. February 9, 2024.

World continues to learn from Colorado’s oil-and-gas methane controls 2/8/2024

World continues to learn from Colorado’s oil-and-gas methane controls

Ten years ago this month, Colorado became the first U.S. state to directly tackle methane emissions from oil and natural gas production. Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian, Policy and Outreach Advisor for Responsible Gas Simon Lomax and, Program Manager of the Sustainable Finance Lab Brad Handler explore how the lessons learned in Colorado are reflected in national and international approaches to regulating methane, which has taken on new urgency recently.  February 8, 2024.

Letter from the US: Chesapeake-Southwestern merger is big deal for US LNG 2/6/2024

Letter from the US: Chesapeake-Southwestern merger is big deal for US LNG

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian, Policy and Outreach Advisor for Responsible Gas Simon Lomax and, Program Manager of the Sustainable Finance Lab Brad Handler comment on the Chesapeake-Southwestern merger’s potential to foster more differentiated gas use in LNG exports.  The merger comes amid a wave of multibillion dollar oil industry tie-ups, including ExxonMobil buying Texas-headquartered Pioneer Natural Resources and Chevron buying New York-headquartered Hess. February 6, 2024.

Why lithium prices have been on a roller coaster ride 2/6/2024

Why lithium prices have been on a roller coaster ride

Payne Institute Faculty Fellow Ian Lange is interviewed on Marketplace talking about how the prices of the metal have fallen about 80% in the past year, and two U.S. lithium companies have cut jobs and pulled back their capital spending recently. The latest is a company called Piedmont Lithium, which announced cuts Tuesday. February 6, 2024.

How Can Capturing Carbon and Monitoring Methane Play a Role in the Energy Transition? 2/2/2024

How Can Capturing Carbon and Monitoring Methane Play a Role in the Energy Transition?

Payne Institute Faculty Fellow Jim Crompton, Paulina Lanz, and Justine Huang are on this podcast discussing how in 2022, global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reached a high of 53 billion metric tons of CO2 equivalent. To bring that down to net zero, we can either stop emitting GHGs into the atmosphere, or we can pull out CO2 that has already been emitted. Also in this episode, Will Daniels, a Payne Institute student researcher is interviewed, talking about methods for detecting methane emissions from oil and gas production and the role that data might play in reducing these emissions. February 2, 2024.

Biden’s EV agenda hits mining world’s boom-and-bust cycle

Biden’s EV agenda hits mining world’s boom-and-bust cycle

Payne Institute Faculty Fellow Ian Lange contributed to this article about how President Joe Biden’s electric vehicle agenda could be in for a roller coaster ride, but this time it can’t be blamed on thorny politics, range anxiety or the effect of falling temperatures on chargers. Instead the focus now is on the price of lithium. The price of the key EV battery ingredient plummeted in recent months, not because of any policy action but due to the simple laws of supply and demand.  January 31, 2024.

LNG Exports Shouldn’t Be the Next Keystone Campaign 1/26/2024

LNG Exports Shouldn’t Be the Next Keystone Campaign

Payne Institute Fellow Liam Denning writes this article on the greenest White House the US has ever seen also happens to preside over a record-breaking domestic oil and gas boom. While that complicates Republican talking points, it also stokes a conflict within President Joe Biden’s own party that has now found its battleground: Liquefied natural gas. January 26,2024.

What is the Cost of Going Green? (Part B) 1/23/24

WHAT IS THE COST OF GOING GREEN? Perspectives from Ghana (PART B)

Payne Institute Faculty Fellow Jim Crompton, Paulina Lanz, and Justine Huang are on this podcast (part B) discussing what the real costs of going green are, and who is going to pay the bill?  In Part B of the episode, Jim chats with a panel of Payne Institute student researchers from Ghana at the Colorado School of Mines – Eben Manful-Sam, John Ayaburi, Rueben Anafo and Felix Ayaburi– who help us better understand the challenges of sustainable development from a sub-Saharan Africa perspective. January 23, 2024.

What is the Cost of Going Green? (Part A) 1/19/2024

What is the Cost of Going Green? (Part A)

Payne Institute Faculty Fellow Jim Crompton, Sustainable Finance Lab Program Manager Brad Handler, Paulina Lanz, and Justine Huang are on this podcast discussing what are the real costs of going green, and who is going to pay the bill?  Brad Handler breaks down why we are still investing so much in fossil fuels, the investments that might be needed to support the growth of renewable energy, and how we might redirect investments towards developing countries that will play a large role in the energy transition. We also dive into why oil companies have been so profitable, whether divesting from fossil fuels is a good idea, and the role that Wall Street and the fossil fuel industry might play in the energy transition.  January 19, 2024.

Building Trust through an Equitable and Inclusive Energy Transition 1/17/2024

Building Trust through an Equitable and Inclusive Energy Transition

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian contributed to this report by the World Economic Forum that provides a framework and 10 critical questions, aiming to build trust, encourage collaboration and guide policy-makers and business leaders in the energy sector towards advancing a just, equitable and inclusive energy transition.  January 17, 2024.

Fast-growing ‘carbon-neutral’ energy company ramps up oil and gas production 1/16/2024

Fast-growing ‘carbon-neutral’ energy company ramps up oil and gas production

Payne Institute Finance Lab Program Manager Brad Handler contributed to this article about the Canadian wildfires this past summer, killing at least 17 people and burning more than 45.7 million acres — blazes that were made 50% more intense by climate change fueled by the burning of fossil fuels — some Canadians took out their anger on their country’s pension plan. They demanded that the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board stop investing their retirement savings in a Colorado oil and gas company that’s ramped up its extraction activity in recent years, drilling near homes, schools and parks.  January 16, 2024.  

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For more information about the Net Zero Emissions Research Area at the Payne Institute for Public Policy, please contact our Deputy Director, Gregory Clough, at gclough@mines.edu.