Graduation Year


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Environmental Analysis

Reader 1

Professor Susan Phillips

Reader 2

Professor Adrian Pantoja

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Rights Information

© 2023 Medha Gelli


The California Air Resources Board’s 2022 Scoping Plan supports the development of Carbon Capture Storage (CCS) facilities in order to meet California’s climate goals. Most of the proposed fourteen sites will be located in the Central Valley. CCS may help achieve negative emissions but poses several environmental problems. Key among these issues are water depletion and contamination, excessive energy usage, air pollution, and the potential for CCS-induced seismic risk. Due to the Central Valley’s disadvantaged and less-resourced background, this area is more at risk for environmental injustices with CCS implementation. By creating Geographic Information Systems (GIS) maps of factors related to CCS and conducting interviews with seismologists and environmental advocates, this project demonstrates that the CCS sites are concerningly close to environmental resources and human populations and that CCS still requires further research for safe implementation. Additionally, CCS can be used as a political strategy that fossil fuel industries employ to maintain the status quo and demonstrate false environmental commitments as a form of greenwashing rather than taking larger steps towards addressing climate change by eliminating the use of fossil fuels. Therefore, this thesis recommends alternative strategies such as land use changes and investment in renewable energy to achieve climate mitigation in California.