Blue Flint, a Midwest AgEnergy company based in North Dakota, has begun drilling a stratigraphic test well to study the feasibility of underground storage of carbon dioxide through carbon capture utilisation and storage (CCUS).

The milestone kicks-off Midwest AgEnergy’s larger initiative called Vision Carbon ZERO, a multi-phased approach that will help the company to reduce its carbon emissions to zero.

Each year Blue Flint produces more than 200,000 tonnes of CO2, which is subsequently scrubbed and released into the atmosphere.

Carbon ZERO will remove the by-product of CO2 from the plant and store it safely underground in a suitable geologic formation.

Speaking at the event, US Senator John Hoeven, said, “With the launch of Midwest AgEnergy’s Carbon Zero initiative, our state continues to lead the way in the development of CCUS technology, a critical path forward for both traditional and renewable energy producers, enabling us to develop more energy with fewer emissions.”

“We’ve worked for well over a decade to set the stage for projects like this, including securing the state authority needed to regulate CO2 storage, funding research into CCUS and implementing and expanding the 45Q tax credit.”

“Being co-located with a coal-fired power station, the Blue Flint ethanol facility already demonstrated the innovative approach we take in North Dakota. With the application of CCUS, our ethanol industry will be able to access more markets and have a more secure economic future.” 

Jeff Zueger, CEO of Midwest AgEnergy, said, “Today is the first step towards a bigger goal for Midwest AgEnergy. We’re grateful for our elected officials who joined us today who also share the same vision of using agriculture and energy while reducing carbon emissions.”