Utilization of Carbon and other Energy Gases - Geologic Research and Assessments

Federal Lands Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sequestration in the U.S.

Federal Lands Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sequestration in the U.S.

The USGS has produced estimates of the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the extraction and end-use combustion of fossil fuels produced on Federal lands in the United States, as well as estimates of ecosystem carbon emissions and sequestration.

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Downloadable Geologic Carbon Dioxide Sequestration Spatial Data

Downloadable Geologic Carbon Dioxide Sequestration Spatial Data

A list of downloadable geologic carbon dioxide sequestration spatial data and associated geologic reports is available here.

Our interactive web map includes investigated basins, assessed areas, stratigraphic columns, and well density information.

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Science Center Objects

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is utilized by industry to enhance oil recovery. Subsurface CO2 storage could significantly impact reduction of CO2 emissions to the atmosphere, but the economics and potential risks associated with the practice must be understood before implementing extensive programs or regulations. Utilization of other energy-related gases such as helium (He), if separated and concentrated from the produced natural gas stream, can make otherwise low-thermal (un-economic) natural gas deposits a viable part of the national natural gas resource base.

The Utilization of Carbon and other Energy Gases – Geologic Research and Assessments project conducts science to:

  • Estimate how much oil can be produced by injecting CO2 into reservoirs for enhanced oil recovery
  • Estimate the amount of CO2 that could be stored in geologic reservoirs nationwide
  • Assess the environmental risks of storing CO2 in underground reservoirs, including the potential for CO2 leakage, impacts to drinking water, and induced seismicity
  • Evaluate the origin, distribution, and resource-potential of non-hydrocarbon natural gases

During the course of the Utilization of Carbon and other Energy Gases – Geologic Research and Assessments project, the following research and assessment topics are being investigated:

Slideshows Associated with Project Member Talks:

  • A Pressure-limited Model to Estimate COInjection and Storage Capacity of Saline Formations: Investigating the Effects of Formation Properties, Model Variables and Presence of Hydrocarbon Reservoirs [.pdf] [1.2 MB]
  • Enhanced Oil Recovery and Residual Oil Zone Studies at the U.S. Geological Survey [.pdf] [2.0 MB]
  • Overview of USGS Carbon Sequestration - Geologic Research and Assessments Project [.pdf] [2.1 MB]
  • Microseismicity Monitoring at the Decatur, IL, CO2 Sequestration Demonstration Site [.pdf] [8.9 MB]
  • Status Report: Estimating greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels produced from Federal lands [.pdf] [1.2 MB]
  • A Probabilistic Assessment Methodology for Carbon Dioxide Enhanced Oil Recovery and Associated Carbon Dioxide Retention [.pdf] [.67 MB]
  • A Database and Probabilistic Assessment Methodology for Carbon Dioxide Enhanced Oil Recovery and Associated Carbon Dioxide Retention in the United States [.pdf] [1.7 MB]
  • Enhanced Oil Recovery and COResource Studies at the U.S. Geological Survey [.pdf] [1.2 MB]
  • Induced Seismicity Monitoring at the Decatur, IL, CO2 Sequestration Demonstration Site [YouTube]
  • U.S. Geological Survey National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources and Associated Research [.pdf] [2.3 MB]
  • U.S. Geological Survey National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources and Associated Research [.pdf] [2.6 MB]
  • National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources - Results [.pdf] [2.2 MB]
  • Development Philosophy of an Assessment Methodology for Hydrocarbon Recovery Potential Using CO2-EOR Associated with Carbon Sequestration [.pdf] [.57 MB]
  • U.S. Geological Survey Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resource Assessment of the United States - 2012 Project Update [.pdf] [3.9 MB]
  • Examining Salinity Restrictions for CO2 Storage: Suggestions from Basin to Reservoir Scales [.pdf] [1.9 MB]
  • Using ArcGIS to Identify Environmental Risk Factors Associated with COStorage [.pdf] [1.7 MB]
  • A Probabilistic Assessment Methodology for the Evaluation of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage [.pdf] [1.4 MB]
  • CO2 Fluid Flow Modeling to Derive the Time Scales of Lateral Fluid Migration [.pdf] [1.2 MB]
  • U.S. Geological Survey Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resource Assessment of the United States - Project Update [.pdf] [3.3 MB]

Project Assessment Results to Date

Federal Lands Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sequestration in the United States: Estimates for 2005–14

  • USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2018-5131 (11/23/2018)

  • In January 2016, the Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior tasked the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) with producing a publicly available and annually updated database of estimated greenhouse gas emissions associated with the extraction and use (predominantly some form of combustion) of fossil fuels from Federal lands. In response, the USGS has produced estimates of the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the extraction and end-use combustion of fossil fuels produced on Federal lands in the United States, as well as estimates of ecosystem carbon emissions and sequestration on those lands. American Indian and Tribal lands were not included in this analysis.

National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources—Results

  • USGS Circular 1386 (06/26/2013)

  • National assessment results of the technically accessible storage resources (TASR) for carbon dioxide (CO2) in geologic formations underlying the onshore and State waters area of the United States.  Assessment data is available in USGS Data Series 774.

National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources—Summary

  • Fact Sheet 2013-3020 (06/26/2013)

  • Summary of national assessment results of the technically accessible storage resources (TASR) for carbon dioxide (CO2) in geologic formations underlying the onshore and State waters area of the United States.

National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources—Data

  • USGS Data Series 774 (06/26/2013)

  • This data publication supports the results publication and contains (1) individual storage assessment unit (SAU) input data forms with all input parameters and details on the allocation of the SAU surface land area by State and general land-ownership category; (2) figures representing the distribution of all storage classes for each SAU; (3) a table containing most input data and assessment result values for each SAU; and (4) a pairwise correlation matrix specifying geological and methodological dependencies between SAUs that are needed for aggregation of results.

National Assessment of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage Resources—Methodology Implementation

  • USGS Open-File Report 2013-1055 (05/10/2013)

  • In response to the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA), the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducted a national assessment of potential geologic storage resources for carbon dioxide (CO2). Storage of CO2 in subsurface saline formations is one important method to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and curb global climate change. This report provides updates and implementation details of the assessment methodology of Brennan and others (2010, http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2010/1127/) and describes the probabilistic model used to calculate potential storage resources in subsurface saline formations.

A Probabilistic Assessment Methodology for the Evaluation of Geologic Carbon Dioxide Storage

  • USGS Open-File Report 2010–1127 (07/01/10)

  • USGS Technical Announcement

  • USGS CO2 Assessment Methodology Overview PowerPoint Presentation (07/01/10)

  • In accordance with the EISA of 2007, the USGS developed a methodology to estimate storage potential that could be applied uniformly to geologic formations across the United States.  This current report is in response to those external comments and reviews and describes the revised methodology. The resource that is assessed is the technically accessible storage resource, which is defined as the mass of CO2 that can be stored in the pore volume of a storage formation.

Development of a Probabilistic Assessment Methodology for Evaluation of Carbon Dioxide Storage [Draft of methodology]

  • USGS Open-File Report 2009–1035 (03/16/09)

  • Press Release

  • The USGS developed a draft methodology, in accordance with the EISA of 2007, to assess the nation's resources for geologic carbon sequestration in oil and gas reservoirs and saline formations. The methodology estimates storage resource potential that can be applied uniformly to geologic formations across the United States.