Energy Resources Program

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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.

Our Science

Our Science

Understanding the national and global availability of resources as well as the environmental impacts of their development is essential for strategic decision making related to the nation’s energy mix.

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The Energy Quarterly

The Energy Quarterly

This quarterly newsletter highlights the latest Energy Resources Program research, activities, publications, and information resources available from our website and other sources.  Read & Subscribe Today!

Current Newsletter

News

Date published: November 30, 2021

U.S. Departments of Energy and Interior Partner to Explore Potential for Geologic Carbon Storage

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Department of the Interior’s U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM) announced a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) establishing cooperation between the two agencies to assess global, regional and national resources for geologic carbon storage.

Date published: November 17, 2021

GeoFlight Takes to the Air to Help Identify Geothermal and Mineral Resources at the Salton Sea

The following is an excerpt from a joint blog post issued by the Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office and the Department of the Interior’s Office of Water & Science regarding the new GeoFlight: Salton Trough initiative.

Date published: September 28, 2021

USGS Estimates 306 Billion Cubic Feet of Recoverable Helium in the United States

The natural gas reservoirs of the United States contain an estimated 306 billion cubic feet of recoverable helium, according to a new report from the U.S. Geological Survey. This is the first-ever estimate of recoverable helium resources from the USGS.

Publications

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Year Published: 2021

Assessment of undiscovered conventional oil and gas resources of China, 2020

Using a geology-based assessment methodology, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated undiscovered, technically recoverable mean resources of 13.4 billion barrels of oil and 244.4 trillion cubic feet of gas in nine geologic provinces of China.

Schenk, Christopher J.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Woodall, Cheryl A.; Ellis, Geoffrey S.; Finn, Thomas M.; Le, Phuong A.; Marra, Kristen R.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.; Drake, Ronald M.
Schenk, C.J., Mercier, T.J., Woodall, C.A., Ellis, G.S., Finn, T.M., Le, P.A., Marra, K.R., Leathers-Miller, H.M., and Drake, R.M., II, 2021, Assessment of undiscovered conventional oil and gas resources of China, 2020: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2021–3051, 4 p., https://dx.doi.org/10.3133/fs20213051.

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Year Published: 2021

Capacity assessment for Earth Monitoring, Analysis, and Prediction (EarthMAP) and future integrated monitoring and predictive science at the U.S. Geological Survey

Executive SummaryManagers of our Nation’s resources face unprecedented challenges driven by the convergence of increasing, competing societal demands and a changing climate that affects the stability, vulnerability, and predictability of those resources. To help meet these challenges, the scientific community must take advantage of all available...

Keisman, Jennifer L.; Bristol, Sky; Brown, David S.; Flickinger, Allison K.; Gunther, Gregory; Murdoch, Peter S.; Musgrove, Marylynn; Nelson, John C.; Steyer, Gregory D.; Thomas, Kathryn A.; Waite, Ian R.
Keisman, J.L., Bristol, S., Brown, D.S., Flickinger, A.K., Gunther, G., Murdoch, P.S., Musgrove, M., Nelson, J.C., Steyer, G.D., Thomas, K.A., and Waite, I.R., 2021, Capacity assessment for Earth Monitoring, Analysis, and Prediction (EarthMAP) and future integrated monitoring and predictive science at the U.S. Geological Survey: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 2021-1102, 110 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20211102.

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Year Published: 2021

Oil and gas wastewater components alter streambed microbial community structure and function

The widespread application of directional drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies expanded oil and gas (OG) development to previously inaccessible resources. A single OG well can generate millions of liters of wastewater, which is a mixture of brine produced from the fractured formations and injected hydraulic fracturing fluids (HFFs). With...

Akob, Denise M.; Mumford, Adam; Fraser, Andrea; Harris, Cassandra Rashan; Orem, William H.; Varonka, Matthew S.; Cozzarelli, Isabelle M.