Ensuring a Greener Tomorrow

Southeastern is providing independent, scientific monitoring of Lake Maurepas during Air Products’ Clean Energy Complex work.


a030823_0157With the ever-increasing rise of greenhouse gas emissions, the risks to the health of our planet—and all who call it home—are colossal.

“Southeastern will be monitoring all facets of this project involving the lake to ensure up-to-date data and information are available. We will make all the data we record available to the public to ensure everyone’s right to know any findings,” said Dan McCarthy, dean of the College of Science and Technology.

The goal behind the project is to store CO2 in pockets beneath the lake, rather than releasing it into the atmosphere to help combat global warming and climate change. A natural gas that allows sunlight to reach the Earth, CO2 also prevents some of the sun’s heat from radiating back. Varying fossil fuels generate different amounts of CO2 emissions. Carbon capture and storage can reduce emissions by more than 80-90 percent, making it an extremely effective way of stopping carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.

Researchers believe that carbon capture is one of the most effective ways to reduce greenhouse emissions. In fact, carbon capture can achieve 14 percent of the global greenhouse gas emissions reductions needed by 2050 to achieve net zero. It is also generally viewed as the only practical way to achieve deep decarbonization in the industrial sector.


“We realized from the outset that we needed comprehensive and independent monitoring of Lake Maurepas and said so publicly early in our work on this clean energy project,” said Louisiana Clean Energy Project Manager at Air Products Andrew Connolly. “We are pleased to have Southeastern serve in this important role. Their scientists have been studying this ecosystem for decades and, with the Turtle Cove Environmental Research Station, they are singularly and best qualified to conduct this monitoring study.”

The scientists from Southeastern will be monitoring the marine life populations (fishes, crabs, shrimp) as well as the plant life in the surrounding wetlands, and they will also be on watch and studying any variations in water quality. All findings will be uploaded to a publicly accessible website that will be housed through Southeastern once monitoring efforts are fully underway.


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