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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.

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Latest Publication

Latest Publication

Bossier and Haynesville Formations- Press Release and Publications
USGS News Release (4/13/2017)

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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

USGS logo
July 17, 2017

The U.S. Geological Survey has evaluated three methods for estimating how much oil and gas could be produced by injecting carbon dioxide (CO2) into petroleum reservoirs.

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
April 13, 2017

USGS also estimates 4 billion barrels of oil and 2 billion barrels of natural gas liquids in the two formations.

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USGS science for a changing world logo
March 3, 2016

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

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 3, 2016

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

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 3, 2016

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

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 3, 2016

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

USGS science for a changing world logo
March 3, 2016

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

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wind turbines
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.  

Energy Data
March 4, 2016

Energy Data

Browse all energy-related datasets.

Tools of the trade for a US Geological Survey engraver- the burin and the hand lens, resting on a contours engraving.
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: 633
Year Published: 2017

Geologic map of the northern White Hills, Mohave County, Arizona

IntroductionThe northern White Hills map area lies within the Kingman Uplift, a regional structural high in which Tertiary rocks lie directly on Proterozoic rocks as a result of Cretaceous orogenic uplift and erosional stripping of Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata. The Miocene Salt Spring Fault forms the major structural boundary in the map area....

Howard, Keith A.; Priest, Susan S.; Lundstrom, Scott C.; Block, Debra L.
Howard, K.A., Priest, S.S., Lundstrom, S.C., and Block, D.L., 2017, Geologic map of the northern White Hills, Mohave County, Arizona: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3372, pamphlet 31 p., scale 1:50,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/sim3372.

Year Published: 2017

Quantifying the heterogeneity of the tectonic stress field using borehole data

The heterogeneity of the tectonic stress field is a fundamental property which influences earthquake dynamics and subsurface engineering. Self-similar scaling of stress heterogeneities is frequently assumed to explain characteristics of earthquakes such as the magnitude-frequency relation. However, observational evidence for such scaling of the...

Schoenball, Martin; Davatzes, Nicholas C.
[complete this] Schoenball, Martin, and Davatzes, Nicholas C., 2016, Quantifying the heterogeneity of the tectonic stress field using local and global borehole data: Journal of Geophysical Research, doi:10.1002/2017JB014370.

Year Published: 2017

The Neogene genus Streptochilus (Brönnimann and Resig, 1971) from the Gulf of California

Four species of the planktonic foraminiferal genus Streptochilus from key Neogene marine localities are documented in relation to the evolution of the Gulf of California: S. globigerus, S. latus, S. macdougallae sp. nov., and S. inglei sp. nov. Planktonic foraminiferal bioevents and strontium isotopes in the Bouse, Tirabuzón, Carmen and Ojo de...

Miranda Martínez, A.Y.; Carreño, A.L.; McDougall, Kristin
Miranda-Martínez, A. Y., Carreño, A. L., & McDougall, K. (2017, April). The Neogene genus Streptochilus (Brönnimann and Resig, 1971) from the Gulf of California. Marine Micropaleontology. Elsevier BV. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marmicro.2017.05.001

Year Published: 2017

Geologic map of the Beacon Rock quadrangle, Skamania County, Washington

The Beacon Rock 7.5′ quadrangle is located approximately 50 km east of Portland, Oregon, on the north side of the Columbia River Gorge, a scenic canyon carved through the axis of the Cascade Range by the Columbia River. Although approximately 75,000 people live within the gorge, much of the region remains little developed and is encompassed by the...

Evarts, Russell C.; Fleck, Robert J.
Evarts, R.C., and Fleck, R.J., 2017, Geologic map of the Beacon Rock quadrangle, Skamania County, Washington: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3367, pamphlet 61 p., scale 1:24,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/sim3367.

Year Published: 2017

Regional and temporal variability of melts during a Cordilleran magma pulse: Age and chemical evolution of the jurassic arc, eastern mojave desert, California

Intrusive rock sequences in the central and eastern Mojave Desert segment of the Jurassic Cordilleran arc of the western United States record regional and temporal variations in magmas generated during the second prominent pulse of Mesozoic continental arc magmatism. U/Pb zircon ages provide temporal control for describing variations in rock and...

Barth, A.P.; Wooden, J.L.; Miller, David; Howard, Keith A.; Fox, Lydia; Schermer, Elizabeth R.; Jacobson, C.E.
Regional and temporal variability of melts during a Cordilleran magma pulse: Age and chemical evolution of the Jurassic arc, eastern Mojave Desert, California. Barth A.P., Wooden J.L., Miller D.M., Howard K.A., Fox L.K., Schermer E.R., Jacobson C.E. Geological Society of America Bulletin. 5 October 2016. v. 129 no. 3-4 p. 429-448

Year Published: 2017

Assessing changes in the physico-chemical properties and fluoride adsorption capacity of activated alumina under varied conditions

Adsorption using activated alumina is a simple method for removing fluoride from drinking water, but to be cost effective the adsorption capacity must be high and effective long-term. The intent of this study was to assess changes in its adsorption capacity under varied conditions. This was determined by evaluating the physico-chemical properties...

Craig, Laura; Stillings, Lisa; Decker, David L.

Year Published: 2017

Reconnaissance sedimentology of selected tertiary exposures in the upland region bordering the Yukon Flats basin, east-central Alaska

This report summarizes reconnaissance sedimentologic and stratigraphic observations made during six days of helicopter-supported fieldwork in 2002 on Tertiary sedimentary rocks exposed in the upland region around the flanks of the Yukon Flats basin in east-central Alaska (fig. 1). This project was a cooperative effort between the Alaska Division...

LePain, David L.; Stanley, Richard G.
LePain, D.L., and Stanley, R.G., 2017, Reconnaissance sedimentology of selected Tertiary exposures in the upland region bordering the Yukon Flats basin, east-central Alaska: LePain, D.L., and Stanley, R.G., 2017, Reconnaissance sedimentology of selected Tertiary exposures in the upland region bordering the Yukon Flats basin, east-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Preliminary Interpretive Report 2016-6, 14 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/29700 Preliminary Interpretive Report 2016-6, 14 p. http://doi.org/10.14509/29700

Year Published: 2017

Geologic map of the Providence Mountains in parts of the Fountain Peak and adjacent 7.5' quadrangles, San Bernardino County, California

IntroductionThe Providence Mountains are in the eastern Mojave Desert about 60 km southeast of Baker, San Bernardino County, California. This range, which is noted for its prominent cliffs of Paleozoic limestone, is part of a northeast-trending belt of mountainous terrain more than 100 km long that also includes the Granite Mountains, Mid Hills,...

Stone, Paul; Miller, David M.; Stevens, Calvin H.; Rosario, Jose J.; Vazquez, Jorge A.; Wan, Elmira; Priest, Susan S.; Valin, Zenon C.
Stone, Paul, Miller, D.M., Stevens, C.H., Rosario, Jose, Vazquez, J.A., Wan, Elmira, Priest, S.S., and Valin, Z.C., 2017, Geologic map of the Providence Mountains in parts of the Fountain Peak and adjacent 7.5' quadrangles, San Bernardino County, California: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3376, pamphlet 52 p., scale 1:24,000, https://doi.org/10.3133/sim3376.

Year Published: 2017

Excursions in fluvial (dis)continuity

Lurking below the twin concepts of connectivity and disconnectivity are their first, and in some ways, richer cousins: continuity and discontinuity. In this paper we explore how continuity and discontinuity represent fundamental and complementary perspectives in fluvial geomorphology, and how these perspectives inform and underlie our conceptions...

Grant, Gordon E.; O'Connor, James E.; Safran, Elizabeth

Year Published: 2017

Larval aquatic insect responses to cadmium and zinc in experimental streams

To evaluate the risks of metal mixture effects to natural stream communities under ecologically relevant conditions, the authors conducted 30-d tests with benthic macroinvertebrates exposed to cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) in experimental streams. The simultaneous exposures were with Cd and Zn singly and with Cd+Zn mixtures at environmentally...

Mebane, Christopher A.; Schmidt, Travis S.; Balistrieri, Laurie S.
Mebane, C.A., T.S. Schmidt, and L.S. Balistrieri. 2016. Larval aquatic insect responses to cadmium and zinc in experimental streams. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry. http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/etc.3599

Year Published: 2017

Lidar-Based Rock-Fall Hazard Characterization of Cliffs

Rock falls from cliffs and other steep slopes present numerous challenges for detailed geological characterization. In steep terrain, rock-fall source areas are both dangerous and difficult to access, severely limiting the ability to make detailed structural and volumetric measurements necessary for hazard assessment. Airborne and terrestrial...

Collins, Brian; Greg M.Stock

Year Published: 2016

Regional geophysics of western Utah and eastern Nevada, with emphasis on the Confusion Range

As part of a long term geologic and hydrologic study of several regional groundwater flow systems in western Utah and eastern Nevada, the U.S. Geological Survey was contracted by the Southern Nevada Water Authority to provide geophysical data. The primary object of these data was to enable construction of the geological framework of the flow...

Mankinen, Edward A.; Rowley, Peter D.; Dixon, Gary L.; McKee, Edwin H.
Mankinen, E.A., Rowley, P.D., Dixon, G.L., and McKee, E.H., 2016, Regional geophysics of western Utah and eastern Nevada, with emphasis on the Confusion Range, in Comer, J.B., Inkenbrandt, P.C., Krahulec, K.A., and Pinnell, M.L., editors, Resources and Geology of Utah's West Desert: Utah Geologic Association Publication 45, p. 147-166.

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Image shows a large black stone with a silver sign in front
July 20, 2016

Cannel coal is a type of bituminous coal, which is the second-highest rank of coal (just behind anthracite). This particular sample has a high carbon content with high pollen and spore content as well. Unlike most bituminous coal, Cannel coal can be carved into ornaments. This sample came from the Eastern Interior Coalfield in Kentucky.

Image shows a drill rig against blue mountains
June 3, 2016

The USGS Core Research Center collaborated with the USGS Energy Resources Program to drill a core from the Mancos Shale to aid in the oil and gas assessment. Image Credit: Joshua Hicks, USGS.

Image shows a woman in a green coat working with a drill core
June 3, 2016

USGS scientist Sarah Hawkins, lead scientist for the Mancos Shale assessment, examining a core drilled by the USGS Core Research Center. This core provided valuable data for the assessment. Image credit: Joshua Hicks, USGS.

Image shows sunrise through a drill rig
June 3, 2016

USGS scientists drill a test core into the Mancos Shale to aid in the assessment for oil and gas resources. Credit: Joshua Hicks.

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

A vehicle is shown at night, with its trunk open and floodlights on
September 16, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 16, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

Image shows USGS scientists standing beside a drill rig in protective gear.
September 14, 2015

USGS scientists drilling a research core near Waco, 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 USGS assesses undiscovered, technically recoverable oil and gas resources for the onshore United States and state territorial waters. Learn more about our Gulf Coast energy research: https://energy.usgs.gov/RegionalStudies/GulfCoast.aspx

 

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

Energy News and Current Publications
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USGS logo
July 17, 2017

The U.S. Geological Survey has evaluated three methods for estimating how much oil and gas could be produced by injecting carbon dioxide (CO2) into petroleum reservoirs.

Drill Rig and American Flag
February 27, 2017

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.

Image shows an outline of the Midland Basin and assessment units on a Texas County Map
November 15, 2016

This is the largest estimate of continuous oil that USGS has ever assessed in the United States.

Image shows sunrise through a drill rig
June 8, 2016

This is the second-largest assessment of potential shale & tight gas resources that the USGS has ever conducted.

Image shows a map with an aerial image of the study site beneath it
May 9, 2016

These are the first published studies to demonstrate water-quality impacts to a surface stream due to activities at an unconventional oil and gas wastewater deep well injection disposal site.

A map showing the Barnett Shale assessment area in east Texas
December 17, 2015

The Barnett Shale contains estimated mean volumes of 53 trillion cubic feet of shale natural gas, 172 million barrels of shale oil and 176 million barrels of natural gas liquids, according to an updated assessment by the U.S. Geological Survey. This estimate is for undiscovered, technically recoverable resources.

USGS science for a changing world logo
December 17, 2015

Key nonfuel mineral commodities that support the U.S. economy and national security are increasingly being sourced from outside the U.S., according to a new U.S. Geological Survey publication.

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