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The Energy Resources Program conducts research and assessments to advance the understanding of the Nation’s energy resources. We study processes critical to the formation, accumulation, occurrence and alteration of geologically based energy resources; prepare resource assessments; and evaluate the environmental and socioeconomic effects of energy resource occurrence, production and use.

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Latest Publication

Latest Publication

USGS Estimates Oil and Gas in Texas’ Eagle Ford Group (6/22/2018)

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Lab Update

Energy Geochemistry Laboratory Updates

Latest Notice of Data Quality Issue for the Inorganic Section of the Energy Geochemistry Laboratory, and Closure of the Inorganic Section (Program Update, March 10, 2017).

Lab Update Details

News

Date published: June 22, 2018

USGS Estimates Oil and Gas in Texas’ Eagle Ford Group

The Eagle Ford Group of Texas contains estimated means of 8.5 billion barrels of oil, 66 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, and 1.9 billion barrels of natural gas liquids, according to a new assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey. This estimate consists of undiscovered, technically recoverable resources in continuous accumulations.

Date published: May 16, 2018

Mapping the Nation's Wind Turbines

There are more than 57,000 wind turbines across the United States, and a new tool allows you to get up close and personal with each one!

Date published: April 19, 2018

U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Department of Energy Release Online Public Dataset and Viewer of U.S. Wind Turbine Locations and Characteristics

Today, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in partnership with DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the American Wind Energy Association, released the United States Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) and the USWTDB Viewer to access this new public dataset.

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Date published: March 3, 2016

Oil and Gas

Oil and gas undiscovered resource assessments for conventional and unconventional accumulations, reserve growth evaluations, and energy economic analyses for the U.S. and world.

Date published: March 3, 2016

Coal

U.S. coal resource and reserve assessments, U.S. and world coal quality, and coalbed gas.

Date published: March 3, 2016

Other Energy

Research and evaluations of gas hydrates, geothermal, uranium, oil shale, and wind energy impacts on animals.

Date published: March 3, 2016

Health and Environment

Studies of environmental aspects of energy such as water from oil and gas production, geologic carbon sequestration, and mercury and selenium in the environment.

Date published: March 3, 2016

Geochemistry and Geophysics

Seismic data acquisition, processing, interpretation, and archiving; energy geochemistry laboratory; and geochemistry research.

Filter Total Items: 4
Date published: February 15, 2018

Data and calculations to support the study of the sea-air flux of methane and carbon dioxide on the West Spitsbergen margin in June 2014

This dataset collected on the West Spitsbergen margin during U.S. Geological Survey Coastal and Marine Geology Program Field Activity 2014-013-FA, which was carried out in conjunction with the University of Tromso and the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel on the R/V Helmer Hanssen.

Date published: April 26, 2016

National Wind Turbine Map & Database

USGS has recently undertaken a project to develop a methodology for assessing wind energy impacts on wildlife at a national scale. The USGS data set provides industrial-scale onshore wind turbine locations in the United States through July 22, 2013.  

Date published: March 4, 2016

Energy Data

Browse all energy-related datasets.

Date published: March 4, 2016

Energy Tools

View and download map-based energy data, search energy GIS data collections, browse the coal photomicrograph atlas and coal quality database, perform an advanced publications search, explore seismic reflection profiling data in Alaska, look at and print world geology maps, peruse the energy multimedia library, and more.

Filter Total Items: 1,937
Year Published: 2018

Outburst floods provide erodability estimates consistent with long-term landscape evolution

Most current models for the landscape evolution over geological timescales are based on semi-empirical laws that consider riverbed incision proportional to rock erodability (dependent on lithology) and to the work performed by water flow (stream power). However, the erodability values obtained from these models are entangled with poorly known...

Garcia-Castellanos, Daniel; O'Connor, Jim E.
Garcia-Castellanos, D., and O'Connor, J.E., 2018, Outburst floods provide erodability estimates consistent with long-term landscape evolution: Scientific Reports, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-28981-y.

Year Published: 2018

Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources in the Midlands area, England, 2018

Using a geology-based assessment methodology, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated mean undiscovered, technically recoverable resources of 319 million barrels of oil and 8 trillion cubic feet of gas in the Midlands area of England.

Schenk, Christopher J.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Woodall, Cheryl A.; Finn, Thomas M.; Gaswirth, Stephanie B.; Le, Phuong A.; Brownfield, Michael E.; Marra, Kristen R.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.
Schenk, C.J., Tennyson, M.E., Mercier, T.J., Woodall, C.A., Finn, T.M., Gaswirth, S.B., Le, P.A., Brownfield, M.E., Marra, K.R., and Leathers-Miller, H.M., 2018, Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources in the Midlands area, England, 2018: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2018–3028, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20183028.

Year Published: 2018

Geochemical characterization and modeling of regional groundwater contributing to the Verde River, Arizona between Mormon Pocket and the USGS Clarkdale gage

We use synoptic surveys of stream discharge, stable isotopes, and dissolved noble gases to identify the source of groundwater discharge to the Verde River in central Arizona. The Verde River more than doubles in discharge in Mormon Pocket over a 1.4 km distance that includes three discrete locations of visible spring input to the river and other...

Beisner, Kimberly R.; Gardner, W. Payton; Hunt, Andrew G.
Beisner, K.R., Gardner, W.P., Hunt, A.G., (2018) Geochemical characterization and modeling of regional groundwater contributing to the Verde River, Arizona between Mormon Pocket and the USGS Clarkdale gage, Journal of Hydrology. vol. 564, p. 99-114. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2018.06.078

Year Published: 2018

Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources in the Eagle Ford Group and associated Cenomanian–Turonian Strata, U.S. Gulf Coast, Texas, 2018

Using a geology-based assessment methodology, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated undiscovered, technically recoverable mean resources of 8.5 billion barrels of oil and 66 trillion cubic feet of gas in continuous accumulations in the Upper Cretaceous Eagle Ford Group and associated Cenomanian–Turonian strata in onshore lands of the U.S. Gulf...

Whidden, Katherine J.; Pitman, Janet K.; Pearson, Ofori N.; Paxton, Stanley T.; Kinney, Scott A.; Gianoutsos, Nicholas J.; Schenk, Christopher J.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.; Birdwell, Justin E.; Brownfield, Michael E.; Burke, Lauri A.; Dubiel, Russell F.; French, Katherine L.; Gaswirth, Stephanie B.; Haines, Seth S.; Le, Phuong A.; Marra, Kristen R.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Woodall, Cheryl A.
Whidden, K.J., Pitman, J.K., Pearson, O.N., Paxton, S.T., Kinney, S.A., Gianoutsos, N.J., Schenk, C.J., Leathers-Miller, H.M., Birdwell, J.E., Brownfield, M.E., Burke, L.A., Dubiel, R.F., French, K.L., Gaswirth, S.B., Haines, S.S., Le, P.A., Marra, K.R., Mercier, T.J., Tennyson, M.E., and Woodall, C.A., 2018, Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources in the Eagle Ford Group and associated Cenomanian–Turonian strata, U.S. Gulf Coast, Texas, 2018: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2018–3033, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20183033.

Year Published: 2018

DDT and related compounds in pore water of shallow sediments on the Palos Verdes Shelf, California, USA

For nearly two and a half decades following World War II, production wastes from the world's largest manufacturer of technical DDT (1-chloro-4-[2,2,2-trichloro-1-(4-chlorophenyl)ethyl]benzene) were discharged into sewers of Los Angeles County. Following treatment, the wastes were released via a submarine outfall system to nearshore coastal waters...

Eganhouse, Robert; DiFilippo, Erica L.; Pontolillo, James; Orem, William H.; Hackley, Paul C.; Edwards, Brian
Robert P. Eganhouse, Erica DiFilippo, James Pontolillo, William Orem, Paul Hackley, Brian D. Edwards, DDT and related compounds in pore water of shallow sediments on the Palos Verdes Shelf, California, USA, Marine Chemistry, Volume 203, 2018, pages 78-90.

Year Published: 2018

Rapid 3-D analysis of rockfalls

Recent fatal and damaging rockfalls in Yosemite National Park indicate the need for rapid response data collection methods to inform public safety and assist with management response. Here we show the use of multiple-platform remote sensing methods to rapidly capture pertinent data needed to inform management and the public following a several...

Stock, Greg M.; Guerin, A.; Avdievitch, Nikita N.; Collins, Brian D.; Jaboyedoff, Michel
Stock, G.M., Guerin, A., Avdievitch, N., Collins, B.D., Jaboyedoff, M., 2018, Rapid 3-D analysis of rockfalls, GSA Today, Groundwork, v. 28, https://doi.org/10.1130/GSATG374GW.1.

Year Published: 2018

Against the current— The Mojave River from sink to source: The 2018 Desert Symposium field trip road log

The Mojave River evolved over the past few million years by “fill and spill” from upper basins near its source in the Transverse Ranges to lower basins. Each newly “spilled into” basin in the series? sustained a long-lived lake but gradually filled with Mojave River sediment, leading to spill to a yet lower elevation? basin. The Mojave River...

Miller, David; Reynolds, R.E.; Groover, Krishangi D.; Buesch, David C.; Brown, H. J.; Cromwell, Geoffrey; Densmore-Judy, Jill; Garcia, A.L.; Hughson, D.; Knott, J.R.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.
Miller, D.M., Reynolds, R.E., Groover, K., Buesch, D.C., Brown, H.J., Cromwell, G.A., Densmore, J., Garcia, A.L., Hughson, D., Knott, J.R., and Lovich, J., 2018, Against the current-The Mojave River from sink to source; The 2018 Desert Symposium Field Trip Road Log: California, Desert Symposium meeting in April of 2018.

Year Published: 2018

Paleozoic shale gas resources in the Sichuan Basin, China

The Sichuan Basin, China, is commonly considered to contain the world’s most abundant shale gas resources. Although its Paleozoic marine shales share many basic characteristics with successful United States gas shales, numerous geologic uncertainties exist, and Sichuan Basin shale gas production is nascent. Gas retention was likely compromised by...

Potter, Christopher J.

Year Published: 2018

World distribution of uranium deposits

Deposit data derived from IAEA UDEPO (http://infcis.iaea.org/UDEPO/About.cshtml) database with assistance from P. Bruneton (France) and M. Mihalasky (U.S.A.). The map is an updated companion to "World Distribution of Uranium Deposits (UDEPO) with Uranium Deposit Classification, IAEA Tech-Doc-1629". Geology was derived from L.B. Chorlton,...

Fairclough, M. C.; Irvine, J. A.; Katona, L. F.; Simmon, W. L.; Bruneton, P.; Mihalasky, Mark J.; Cuney, M.; Aranha, M.; Pylypenko, O.; Poliakovska, K.
Fairclough, M.C., Irvine, J.A., Katona, L.F., and Slimmon, W.L., 2018, World distribution of uranium deposits, second edition: International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna, Austria.

Year Published: 2018

Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources in the Canning Basin Province, Australia, 2017

Using a geology-based assessment methodology, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated mean undiscovered, technically recoverable resources of 1.3 billion barrels of oil and 34.4 trillion cubic feet of gas in the Canning Basin Province of Australia.

Schenk, Christopher J.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Woodall, Cheryl A.; Finn, Thomas M.; Le, Phuong A.; Brownfield, Michael E.; Gaswirth, Stephanie B.; Marra, Kristen R.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.
Schenk, C.J., Tennyson, M.E., Mercier, T.J., Woodall, C.A., Finn, T.M., Le, P.A., Brownfield, M.E., Gaswirth, S.B., Marra, K.R., and Leathers-Miller, H.M., 2018, Assessment of undiscovered oil and gas resources in the Canning Basin Province, Australia, 2017: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2018–3023, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20183023.

Year Published: 2018

Assessment of undiscovered conventional oil and gas resources in the downdip Paleogene formations, U.S. Gulf Coast, 2017

Using a geology-based assessment methodology, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated mean undiscovered, technically recoverable conventional resources of 100 million barrels of oil and 16.5 trillion cubic feet of gas in the downdip Paleogene formations in onshore lands and State waters of the U.S. Gulf Coast region.

Buursink, Marc L.; Doolan, Colin A.; Enomoto, Catherine B.; Craddock, William H.; Coleman, James L.; Brownfield, Michael E.; Gaswirth, Stephanie B.; Klett, Timothy R.; Le, Phuong A.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.; Marra, Kristen R.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Pearson, Ofori N.; Pitman, Janet K.; Schenk, Christopher J.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Whidden, Katherine J.; Woodall, Cheryl A.
Buursink, M.L., Doolan, C.A., Enomoto, C.B., Craddock, W.H., Coleman, J.L., Jr., Brownfield, M.E., Gaswirth, S.B., Klett, T.R., Le, P.A., Leathers-Miller, H.M., Marra, K.R., Mercier, T.J., Pearson, O.N., Pitman, J.K., Schenk, C.J., Tennyson, M.E., Whidden, K.J., and Woodall, C.A., 2018, Assessment of undiscovered conventional oil and gas resources in the downdip Paleogene formations, U.S. Gulf Coast, 2017: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2018–3019, 4 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/fs20183019.

Year Published: 2018

Assessing rockfall susceptibility in steep and overhanging slopes using three-dimensional analysis of failure mechanisms

Rockfalls strongly influence the evolution of steep rocky landscapes and represent a significant hazard in mountainous areas. Defining the most probable future rockfall source areas is of primary importance for both geomorphological investigations and hazard assessment. Thus, a need exists to understand which areas of a steep cliff are more likely...

Matasci, Battista; Stock, Greg M.; Jaboyedoff, Michael; Carrea, Dario; Collins, Brian D.; Guérin, Antoine; Matasci, G.; Ravanel, L.
Matasci B., Stock G.M., Jaboyedoff M., Carrea D., Collins B.D., Guerin A., Matasci G., Ravanel L., 2018, Assessing rockfall susceptibility in steep and overhanging slopes using three-dimensional analysis of failure mechanisms: Landslides, Vol. 15(5), 859–878 .

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May 7, 2018

Mapping the Nation's Wind Power: Using the U.S. Wind Turbine Database

Did you know there are more than 57,000 wind turbines in the United States? In this video, we'll show you how you can get to know each and every one of them with our U.S. Wind Turbine Database and viewer, which we've assembled in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy, DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the American Wind Energy Association.
 

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Image shows a drill rig and vehicles near a road at dawn
April 17, 2018

Eagle Ford Test Well Drilling in Texas

USGS researchers drill a research well located on the south side of U.S. 90, 7.1 miles east of Brackettville, Texas. This core was drilled by USGS during field work for an oil and gas assessment for the Eagle Ford of the Gulf Coast Basins. Cores like these provide information on the various rock layers, such as their make-up, their age, etc. The borehole, core, and logging

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Image of Tim Collett talking about Gas Hydrates
February 28, 2018

USGS in South Korea

Tim Collett, USGS research geologist, presenting at the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources' (KIGAM)  international program for geoscience resources.

USGS scientists in front of a painted archway in South Korea
February 28, 2018

USGS in Daejon, South Korea

USGS scientists, Bill Waite, Tim Collett, and Seth Haines in front of a archway in Daejeon, South Korea

Photograph of a core storage facility in South Korea
February 28, 2018

Core Storage Facility in Daejeon, South Korea

Core storage facility at the the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources in Daejeon, South Korea

Gas hydrate from offshore Korea
February 28, 2018

Gas Hydrate from offshore Korea

Gas hydrate from offshore Korea courtesy of the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources.   Learn more about gas hydrates at https://woodshole.er.usgs.gov/project-pages/hydrates/

Image of Tim Collett
February 28, 2018

USGS research geologist, Tim Collett

Tim Collett, research geologist in gas hydrates, is chief for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Energy Resources Program gas hydrate research efforts offering a presentation on unconventional oil and gas resources at KIGAM, the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources in Daejeon, South Korea

Image of Seth Haines
February 28, 2018

Gas Hydrate and Sediment Pressure Chamber

 Seth Haines, USGS research geophysicist, on a Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources laboratory tour, which included stops at their gas hydrate and sediment pressure chamber - it's a whopping 320 gallons, dwarfing even Seth, a 6-footer.  The chamber is the silvery ring and the black cylinder beneath it.  It's so big and heavy that it gets wheeled out of that

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Image shows squares of permafrost
December 31, 2017

Permafrost in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska

Permafrost forms a grid-like pattern in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, a 22.8 million acre region managed by the Bureau of Land Management on Alaska's North Slope. USGS has periodically assessed oil and gas resource potential there. These assessments can be found here.

March 31, 2017

Drilling a Research Well in the Eagle Ford

USGS scientists drill a research well near Waco, Texas, as part of the assessment of oil and gas resources in the Eagle Ford Group.  Cores like these provide information on the various rock layers, such as their make-up, their age, etc. 

Image shows coal being loaded into trucks at a coal mine
December 31, 2016

Loading Coal in the Trapper Mine

Coal is loaded into trucks at the Trapper Mine in northwest Colorado.

 

For our full listing of current Press Releases, Technical Announcements, USGS & Outside Publications, Field Reports, and Science Highlights 

Energy News and Current Publications
Filter Total Items: 46
Date published: June 22, 2018

USGS Estimates Oil and Gas in Texas’ Eagle Ford Group

The Eagle Ford Group of Texas contains estimated means of 8.5 billion barrels of oil, 66 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, and 1.9 billion barrels of natural gas liquids, according to a new assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey. This estimate consists of undiscovered, technically recoverable resources in continuous accumulations.

Date published: May 16, 2018

Mapping the Nation's Wind Turbines

There are more than 57,000 wind turbines across the United States, and a new tool allows you to get up close and personal with each one!

Date published: April 19, 2018

U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Department of Energy Release Online Public Dataset and Viewer of U.S. Wind Turbine Locations and Characteristics

Today, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in partnership with DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the American Wind Energy Association, released the United States Wind Turbine Database (USWTDB) and the USWTDB Viewer to access this new public dataset.

Date published: March 8, 2018

Modern Perspective on Gas Hydrates

After lying hidden in sediments for thousands of years, delicate frozen gas structures are in the spotlight for both scientific research and the national interest. These structures, known as gas hydrate, are being investigated by scientists the world over for their possible contributions to the global energy mix, as well as their potential interaction with the environment.

Date published: February 23, 2018

USGS in South Korea

 For several years, KIGAM, the Korean Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, has hosted an international program for geoscience resources (IS-Geo).  The IS-Geo program draws together federal and private-sector professionals from the international community to discuss a range of specific geoscience and mineral topics.

Date published: December 22, 2017

Re-Assessing Alaska's Energy Frontier

Less than 80 miles from Prudhoe Bay, home to the giant oil fields that feed the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, lies the site of USGS’ latest oil and gas assessment: the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska and adjacent areas. Managed by the Bureau of Land Management, the NPR-A covers 22.8 million acres, more than the entire state of South Carolina.

Date published: October 26, 2017

Geologic Groundwork-How USGS Coal Assessments Assist EIA's Coal Forecasts

It is difficult to overstate the importance of energy to the American economy.  Managing this vital sector depends on knowing how many energy resources we have, how many we use and need, and how these resources are transported

Date published: October 23, 2017

Assessments Evolved: USGS Coal Research in the 21st Century

Although often associated with helping fuel the Nation’s growth during the Industrial Revolution, coal is very much part of our space-age present. In 2016, coal-fired power plants provided 30.4 percent of the country’s electricity, and it is an important source of employment in many states.

Date published: October 20, 2017

Exploring Gas Hydrates as a Future Energy Source

In the past decade, the development of the Barnett, Eagle Ford, Marcellus, and other shales has dominated the national consciousness regarding natural gas. But in Alaska, another form of natural gas has been the focus of research for decades—methane hydrate.

Date published: October 18, 2017

EarthWord–Gas Hydrate

No, this EarthWord isn’t how natural gas quenches its thirst-it just sounds like it...

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