Texas House Approves 2007 FutureGen Legislation
Senate Bill 1461 Strengthens Texas Bid for Historic Clean Energy Project
AUSTIN, Texas - On a vote of 139-0, the Texas House of Representatives today approved Senate Bill 1461, the omnibus 2007 FutureGen bill that will markedly enhance Texas' two FutureGen host site proposals.
The FutureGen bill now returns to the Senate for final consideration. Senate concurrence would send the bill to the governor for his signature into law.
Sen. Kel Seliger, R-Amarillo, is the author of SB 1461. Rep. Byron Cook, R-Corsicana, sponsored the historic legislation in the House.
"This legislation makes Texas the frontrunner in the national competition to win the $1 billion FutureGen project, a project that could revolutionize the energy industry by generating electricity from coal with near-zero emissions," Sen. Seliger said.
"I am proud to sponsor legislation that will protect the public health, that will make our supply of electricity more reliable and that will help develop the next generation of clean-coal technology," Sen. Seliger said.
"Senator Seliger is to be commended for guiding this very important bill through the legislative process. The legacy of cleaner, more reliable energy that FutureGen promises will benefit Texans for generations to come," said Texas Railroad Commissioner Michael L. Williams, who also chairs the FutureGen Texas Advisory Board.
FutureGen is a $1 billion initiative to build the world's first near-zero emissions fossil fuel energy facility. Co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and the FutureGen Alliance, FutureGen will gasify coal to generate electricity and produce hydrogen and capture and store carbon dioxide. The technologies demonstrated, refined and commercialized at this prototype power plant will lead to the deployment of similar clean energy facilities throughout the United States and the world -- and help to shape the global energy future.
Two Texas sites are among the four finalists for the FutureGen location, Odessa and the Heart of the Brazos proposal near Jewett in East Texas. A final site is expected to be announced later this year.
Senate District 31, represented by Seliger, includes the proposed FutureGen site near Odessa. Seliger is serving the citizens of District 31 in his first term in the Texas Senate. The district spans 26 counties from the Panhandle to the Permian Basin and includes Amarillo, Midland, Odessa and Big Spring.