Geology is complex. But the politics that surround it might be pretty hard to fathom, too.

Thus, when a major carbon storage project proposed to put industrial pollution far underground beneath Lake Maurepas, the combination of complex science and not-in-my-backyard fears became toxic.

In the Legislature, there was a curious alliance of generally conservative Republicans from Livingston Parish and elsewhere joining environmentalists to rally against business and industry, for whom carbon capture is an important element of lowering emissions responsible for climate changes.

The Livingston Parish project was a flashpoint that led to a number of bills aimed at restricting or even banning carbon capture and its storage underground.

Not one of them passed. In part, that is because of the big influence of the oil and gas industry in the State Capitol, but it’s also because the industry had a pretty good case. Louisiana has extensive experience with injection wells and geologists argued that the state is a particularly good site for the practice.

It is also backed by Gov. John Bel Edwards, who has made CCS technologies a key point in his climate action plan.

Instead of the more extreme reactions, a political solution came from House Speaker Clay Schexnayder, R-Gonzales. His House Bill 571 passed unanimously in the Senate and 83-9 in the House. It awaits the governor’s likely signature.

The new policy beefs up requirements for public notice and environmental studies before the Class VI wells, already heavily regulated, will be granted permits from state government. The political part is a cut in revenues from particular projects, to go to local governments instead of the state.

Louisiana has vast experience with these particular types of wells and carbon capture is an essential element of responding to a crisis in the world’s climate. That overall issue is an existential crisis for our coastal state, where sea levels are rising.

The Schexnayder bill imposes some new measures on the process to protect the environment. To that extent, the political process has worked.