Energy Resources Program


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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News & Highlights

News & Highlights

Current Press Releases, Technical Announcements, Publications, Field Reports, and Science Highlights. 

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Welcome to the new ERP Website!  We are still undergoing content improvements, but please browse around and rediscover our science in a new way.  

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Energy Resources



Regional Studies


Date published: April 26, 2019

Test Well Confirms Two Gas Hydrate Reservoirs in Alaska North Slope

In the far north of Alaska, near the giant Prudhoe Bay oil field, an international research consortium has been studying the potential of an altogether different energy source.  In late December of 2018, drilling operations confirmed the existence of two high-quality reservoirs that were fully saturated with a potential alternative fuel source: gas hydrate.

Date published: March 8, 2019

Making Minerals-How Growing Rocks Can Help Reduce Carbon Emissions

Following an assessment of geologic carbon storage potential in sedimentary rocks, the USGS has published a comprehensive review of potential carbon storage in igneous and metamorphic rocks through a process known as carbon mineralization.


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Year Published: 2019

Assessment of continuous oil resources in the Eastern Great Basin Province of Nevada, Utah, and Idaho, 2018

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) quantitatively assessed the potential for undiscovered, technically recoverable continuous oil and gas resources in the Eastern Great Basin Province (Anna and others, 2007) of Nevada, Utah, and Idaho (fig. 1). The assessment focused on the area of the province between the Roberts Mountains and...

Schenk, Christopher J.; Mercier, Tracey J.; Woodall, Cheryl A.; Finn, Thomas M.; Gaswirth, Stephanie B.; Marra, Kristen R.; Le, Phuong A.; Brownfield, Michael E.; Leathers-Miller, Heidi M.; Drake, Ronald M.; Kinney, Scott A.
Schenk, C.J., Mercier, T.J., Woodall, C.A., Finn, T.M., Gaswirth, S.B., Marra, K.R., Le, P.A., Brownfield, M.E., Leathers-Miller, H.M., Drake, R.M., II, and Kinney, S.A., 2019, Assessment of continuous oil resources in the Eastern Great Basin Province of Nevada, Utah, and Idaho, 2018: U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2019–3002, 2 p.,

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Year Published: 2019

Improving pressure-limited CO2 storage capacity in saline formations by means of brine extraction

The carbon dioxide (CO2) storage capacity of saline formations may be constrained by reservoir pressure limitations. Brine extraction could be necessary to increase the CO2 storage capacity of a given formation, manage the extent of the underground CO2 plume and induced pressure front, and control the migration direction. To estimate the...

Jahediesfanjani, Hossein; Anderson, Steven T.; Warwick, Peter D.

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Year Published: 2019

Hydrocarbons in upland groundwater, Marcellus Shale Region, Northeastern Pennsylvania and Southern New York, USA

Water samples from 50 domestic wells located <1 km (proximal) and >1 km (distal) from shale-gas wells in upland areas of the Marcellus Shale region were analyzed for chemical, isotopic, and groundwater-age tracers. Uplands were targeted because natural mixing with brine and hydrocarbons from deep formations is less common in those areas...

McMahon, Peter B.; Lindsey, Bruce D.; Conlon, Matthew D.; Hunt, Andrew G.; Belitz, Kenneth; Jurgens, Bryant; Varela, Brian