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WASHINGTON - Upon hearing of the restructuring of the FutureGen project Senator Barrasso issued the following remarks:

“Clean coal research is critical to the future of Wyoming coal, the future of Wyoming’s tax base, and the future of Wyoming ’s workers.

Washington ’s bureaucracy is full of doubletalk.  Programs are authorized then not funded.  Funds are appropriated then not spent.  And there is endless study and debate of clean coal initiatives with no follow through. 

“We simply cannot afford these unnecessary bureaucratic delays.  Funds have been appropriated, and the money must be put to work.

Wyoming can and will compete exceptionally well for future technology initiatives.

America, not China , must take the lead on clean coal research.  FutureGen is an important part of that equation.

“We cannot afford to depress private sector interest.  Public-private research and commercial deployment are the future of major projects and vital to Wyoming .”

The Department of Energy announced it would shift its funding commitment for three-quarters of the cost to build the coal-fired, 275-megawatt FutureGen power plant in Illinois to multiple clean coal power plants.

FutureGen is proposed to test the use of coal while storing carbon dioxide and eliminating greenhouse gas emissions. Illinois lawmakers have vowed to continue efforts for the original FutureGen site and funding.

At a hearing of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, U.S. Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyo) pressed the Deputy Secretary of the Office of Oil and Natural Gas, Mr. James Slutz regarding private sector interests.  The Committee was investigating carbon dioxide capture, transportation, and storage.