ExxonMobil unveils its LaBarge Carbon Capture expansion project at County Commission meeting

ExxonMobil’s Shute Creek Facility in Lincoln County

SWEETWATER COUNTY, WYOMING (Dec. 17, 2019) — It was good news for the Sweetwater County Commission Tuesday when representatives from ExxonMobil offered details about the company’s plans to expand its Shute Creek facility.

Called the LaBarge Carbon Capture Project, the application submission to the state for this proposed $260 million project will happen Jan. 13, 2020, with a 30-40 day comment period to follow.

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Pam Heatherington, Wyoming Asset manager for ExxonMobil, explained most of the project will be in Lincoln County but a compession sales building will be located in Sweetwater County.

The project includes construction of new process equipment at the Shute Creek facility in Lincoln County and a CO2 Compession facility in Sweetwater County, along with a new CO2 disposal well and CO2 pipeline.

The purpose of the proposed project is to dispose of excess CO2 produced from source wells during natural gas production.

Joe Hammond with Jacobs Engineering said the proposed project will consist of 29 months of construction, with the expected start date in August of 2020. Heatherington said they expect to hire a peak construction workforce of 388 from August 2020 to September 2021.

The local workforce is estimated to average 16, with a peak of 37 in the summer months. Heatherington said 11 additional permanent positions are expected as a result of this proposal.

Hammond noted ExxonMobil is looking at a second phase to this project, which could start even as this proposed project gets underway. These plans, however, are still under discussion, he added.

After the comment period, a hearing will be scheduled on April 9. Hammond said he believes it will be in Kemmerer but location is still to be determined.

Industrial Siting Administrator Brian Lovett with the Wyoming Industrial Siting Council, said Lincoln County will be the lead in this project and would be contacting Sweetwater County prior to the comment period.

As to the proposed projects unmitigated impacts, Lovett suggested the commissioners consider and put those expected impacts together and coordinate with Lincoln County.

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Facility commissioning and startup is expected between October and December of 2022.

Commissioner Lauren Schoenfeld asked what amount will be invested in Sweetwater County. Heatherington said it will be 50-50 between Sweetwater and Lincoln County.

Sales and use tax during construction is expected to expand by $3.2 million for Sweetwater County, while the ad valorem tax for the 25-year operation is expected to jump up $10 million.

In Lincoln County, those figures are expected to be $3.9 million and $18 million respectively.

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