Earthjustice Responds to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Decision to Hand Over Permitting Authority to Louisiana for Carbon Dioxide Injection Wells

A massive buildout of CCS projects in Louisiana threatens to extend the life of fossil fuels and perpetuate the harms of pollution in overburdened communities.


Dustin Renaud,, (228) 209-2194

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is granting Louisiana primary permitting authority over Class VI carbon injection wells in the state. Class VI injection wells under the Clean Drinking Water Act are specifically designed for the underground injection of carbon dioxide for long-term storage.

The recent Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act (IIJA) and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) provide billions of dollars in federal subsidies and incentives for carbon capture and storage projects, including funding for fossil fuels projects. With the new and expanded federal funding opportunities, announcements for new fossil fuels projects equipped with carbon capture have surged in Louisiana—along with those projects, applications for new carbon injection wells for long-term storage have also increased significantly.

Twenty-two (22) applications for 55 Louisiana Class VI wells are pending at the EPA and are expected to be transferred to Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, which now has the authority to approve or deny those permit applications. The state agency has proposed in its application to the EPA to approve “at least six permits” in the first two years of being granted permitting authority. There are currently only 2 active Class VI injection wells in the United States, both administered by the EPA.

Considering the announcement, Earthjustice President Abigail Dillen issued the following statement:

“We are very disappointed to hear about EPA’s decision to grant Louisiana primary permitting authority over carbon injection wells. This decision is highly concerning given the high stakes of this new injection well program, the potential impacts to communities and the environment, and Louisiana’s failing track record managing other programs to protect human health and the environment.

“We will review the decision once it is released, and we will continue to work in partnership with Louisiana residents to protect their communities and environment.”

The Donaldsonville Primary School in Ascension Parish, Louisiana, sits directly next to the CF Industries plant.
The Donaldsonville Primary School in Ascension Parish, Louisiana, sits directly next to the CF Industries plant. (Bryan Tarnowski for Earthjustice)

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