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Environment Minister McKenna says carbon capture part of solution to climate change

If first impressions count, federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna sounded impressed after her first look at the carbon capture and storage (CCS) plant at Boundary Dam power station near Estevan. McKenna, who trained as human rights and social justice lawyer, toured the $1.5-billion CCS plant on Wednesday along with Saskatchewan Environment Minster Herb Cox and SaskPower executives. “We’re obviously looking at our climate change plan and what we can do to reduce emissions,” McKenna said following her tour of the CCS plant at Boundary Dam’s Unit 3. “Certainly, carbon capture and storage (is) part of that and it was really great to see it firsthand.” After some false starts, cost-overruns and production problems, SaskPower says the CCS plant is on track to capture 800,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2016, equivalent to taking about 200,000 vehicles off the road for a year. McKenna, who recently attended the G-7 environment ministers meeting in Japan, said many countries use coal to generate electricity, which is a major cause GHG emissions. “We certainly know that coal is being used for power around the world and we need to find ways to reduce emissions from coal.” “So when you have carbon capture and storage, that’s certainly an innovative solution — a made-in-Canada solution,” McKenna said. “It’s a real opportunity for Canada to export solutions.”