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ESR 2000-11

Suitability of the Alberta Subsurface for Carbon Dioxide Sequestration in Geological Media

Abstract: Sequestration of anthropogenic CO2 in geological media is a potential solution to the release into the atmosphere of CO2, a greenhouse gas. Basically, there are five ways of sequestering CO2 in geological media: 1) through enhanced oil recovery (EOR), 2) storage in depleted oil and gas geological reservoirs, 3) replacement of methane by CO2 in deep coal beds (ECBMR), 4) injection into deep saline aquifers, and 5) storage in salt caverns. Criteria in assessing the suitability of a sedimentary basin for CO2 sequestration are 1) tectonism and geology, 2) the flow of formation waters, and 3) the existence of storage media (hydrocarbon reservoirs, coal seams, deep aquifers, and salt structures). Because of CO2 properties, identification of the depths of the 31.1 degrees Celsius isotherm and the 7.38 MPa isobar is essential in establishing if CO2 could be sequestered as a gas, as a liquid, or in a supercritical state.Alberta's subsurface is tectonically stable. The geology of the undeformed part of the Alberta Basin underlying most of Alberta is very favourable for CO2 sequestration due to its layer-cake structure and the existence of confined regional-scale aquifers, oil and gas reservoirs in various stages of depletion, uneconomic coal seams, and extensive salt beds. There are six regions in Alberta with various degrees of suitability and different characteristics in terms of CO2 sequestration in geological media:Northeastern Alberta; generally not suitable; possibly in gas reservoirs and salt cavernsEastern Alberta; reasonably suitable; in oil and gas reservoirs and salt cavernsSoutheastern Alberta; suitable; in oil and gas reservoirs and deep aquifersNorthwestern Alberta; suitable; in oil and gas reservoirs and deep aquifersCentral Alberta; extremely suitable; in oil and gas reservoirs, deep aquifers, coal seams, and salt bedsSouthwestern Alberta; extremely suitable; in oil and gas reservoirs, deep aquifers, and coal seamsMajor CO2 producers in Alberta are found in the northeast (oil-sands plants), in the east (heavy-oil and power plants), in the central part (refineries and power, petrochemical, and cement plants), and in the southwest (power, cement, and gas plants). Future work should identify specific sites and means for sequestering CO2 in the vicinity of major CO2 producers, and characterize these sites in terms of capacity and retention time. Place Keywords 72e 72l 72m 73d 73e 73l 73m 74d 74e 74l 74m 82g 82h 82i 82j 82n 82o 82p 83a 83b 83c 83d 83e 83f 83g 83h 83i 83j 83k 83l 83m 83n 83o 83p 84a 84b 84c 84d 84e 84f 84g 84h 84i 84j 84k 84l 84m 84n 84o 84p alberta Theme Keywords co2 geological media sequestration

Bachu, S.  Brulotte, M.  Grobe, M.  Stewart, S.A.  2000-03-01

SPE 094

Stress Regime at Acid-Gas Injection Operations in Western Canada

Regulatory agencies in Western Canada impose safe limits on the injection pressure to maintain the pressure around the injection well below the fracturing threshold of the rocks. An evaluation of the stress regime at the acid-gas injection sites in ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  Haug, K.  Michael, K.  2008-04-14

BUL 060

Evaluation of effects of deep waste injection in the Cold Lake area, Alberta

The regional and local effects of underground injection of wastewater from in situ oil sands pilot plants have been evaluated at sites in the Cold Lake area, Alberta, using projected injection rates up to the year 2015. Geochemical effects were ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  Perkins, E.H.  Hitchon, B.  Lytviak, A.T.  Underschultz, J.R.  1989-01-01

BUL 059

Hydrogeological and geothermal regimes in the Phanerozoic succession, Cold Lake area, Alberta and Saskatchewan

The natural, steady-state fluid flow and geothermal regimes were determined for a region defined as Tp 50-70, R 15 W3M to R 17 W4M (60 000 km2), including the Cold Lake Oil Sand Deposit and adjacent heavy oil areas to the south. Data processing was ... Show Abstract

Hitchon, B.  Bachu, S.  Sauveplane, C.M.  Ing, A.  Lytviak, A.T.  1989-01-01

BUL 062

Industrial Mineral Potential of Alberta Formation Waters

Nearly 130 000 analyses of formation waters from Alberta and adjacent areas were searched for contents of Ca, Mg, K, Br, I and Li exceeding specified regional exploration thresholds. The 5280 analyses meeting these criteria comprise the formation ... Show Abstract

Hitchon, B.  Bachu, S.  Underschultz, J.R.  Yuan, L.P.  1995-01-01

INF 116

Parameter Identification and Estimation for Aquifer and Reservoir Characterization

After the success of the first Applied Geochemistry Workshop, Banff, June 1-3, 1982, it was decided to enlarge the scope and broaden the area of these meetings, and to bring together scientists and practitioners from both sides of the Canada/USA ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  1990-09-20

OFR 1996-02

Evaluation of Deep Waste Disposal Cold Lake Area, Alberta and Saskatchewan

In the report of the results of the first year (Basin Analysis Group, 1987) the regional geology and natural fluid regime were described for an area defined as Tp 50-70, R 15 W3 Mer to R 17 W4 Mer (60 000 km2), together with numerical simulation of ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  1988-08-31

OFR 1995-01

Resource Estimates of Industrial Minerals in Alberta Formation Waters

Of these, calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), potassium (K), lithium (Li), iodine (I) and bromine (Br) are found in places at concentrations above the corresponding regional and detailed exploration limits. Depending on resource amount and ability to ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  Yuan, L.P.  Brulotte, M.  1995-01-31

OFR 1997-01

Basin-Scale Geology and Hydrogeology of Coalbed-Methane Bearing Strata in Rocky Mountain Sedimentary Basins

Except for the Black Warrior basin in Alabama, all major basins in the United States where coalbed methane is produced or have producibility potential are foreland Rocky Mountain sedimentary basins. Coalbed methane producibility depends in an ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  1997-09-01

OFR 1987-10

Subsurface disposal related to in situ oil sands projects

The Basin Analysis Group of the Alberta Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Oil Sands Research and Terrain Sciences Departments, all of the Alberta Research Council, has been active in research and development of techniques for determining ... Show Abstract

Bachu, S.  Benns, G.W.  1987-09-24