Southern Utes involved in carbon capture venture in Southwest Colorado

Big Pivots

A big, big deal if it pans out, this idea of carbon capture near Ignacio

A new wrinkle on the continuing story of carbon capture and sequestration was added on Thursday when hopes to deploy a form of the technology in Illinois and Colorado were announced.

A technology from Net Power has been licensed to a developer, 8 Rivers Capital.

In Illinois, 8 Rivers is working with agricultural giant Archer-Daniels-Midlands to replace some emissions from a coal power plant.

In Colorado, 8 Rivers is working with the Denver-based Southern Ute Indian Tribe Growth Fund for a natural gas plant to be located on a brownfield site on the Southern Ute Reservation surrounding Ignacio. That project is to be called the Coyote Clean Power Project. Details of the partnership with the Southern Ute Indian Tribe Growth Fund has not been described.

Coyote Energy will decide in 2022 whether to go forward with the plant.

Bloomberg reported that each of the power plants has been projected to cost $500 million. But the developer would have access to a U.S. tax credit, called Section 45Q, for carbon storage projects. That would yield about $50 for each ton of CO2 injected into the ground.Where would that ground be? Not all geology is accommodating. The Bloomberg story noted the proximity of C02 pipeline to the Southern Ute site. Kinder Morgan’s pipeline carries C02 from the McElmo Dome area near Cortez to the Permian Basin oil field for use in enhanced oil recovery. A company, Enchant, also has been talking about putting CO2 into that pipeline from the San Juan Generating Plant, located about 60 miles from Ignacio near Farmington, N.M.

See more about Net Power and its technology. It has received considerable attention since a prototype began use near Houston in 2018. MIT Technology Review cited it as one of the top 10 breakthrough technologies of the year. “Net Power’s technology won’t solve all the problems with natural gas, particularly on the extraction side. But as long as we’re using natural gas, we might as well use it as cleanly as possible,” said the magazine. “Of all the clean-energy technologies in development, Net Power’s is one of the furthest along to promise more than a marginal advance in cutting carbon emissions.” BP


This is from the April 18, 2021, issue of Big Pivots. For a free subscription, go to

Allen Best