The quest for clean, renewable energy is one of the most important scientific challenges of our time. From vast wind farms to technology that harnesses the power of waves, there are many promising alternatives currently being researched. Until their capabilities are fully developed, however, much of the world will continue to rely on traditional fossil fuels such as coal and natural gas, resulting in higher levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide linked with global climate change.
The Midwest Geological Sequestration Consortium is one of seven national research partnerships working to find a balance between our growing energy needs and rising climate concerns by capturing carbon dioxide created in energy production and industrial processes and storing it safely underground in natural geological formations. The MGSC is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy through the National Energy Technology Laboratory via the Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership Program and by a cost share agreement with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Office of Coal Development, through the Illinois Clean Coal Institute.
How deep? Just scroll to the bottom of this page and explore the numbered links on your journey to see where the quest for smarter energy solutions is taking us.
Hold the Date!
2013 Midwest Carbon Sequestration Science Conference
October 7-9, 2013, Champaign, Illinois
The MGSC is planning our 2013 conference and will once again invite open registration for interested CCS participants to attend our annual Project Advisory Meeting. This conference will include a full day of IBDP research presentations covering all aspects of the MGSC Phase III research activities. The conference will also include a STEP-sponsored workshop and an optional tour of the IBDP site. The meeting will begin on Monday, October 7th and is being held at the I Hotel and Conference Center, Champaign, IL. Full meeting details will be distributed in June with registration opening in July.
Carbon Storage Partner Completes First Year of CO2 Injection Operations in Illinois
Washington, D.C. — A project important to demonstrating the commercial viability of carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) technology has completed the first year of injecting carbon dioxide (CO2) from an industrial plant at a large-scale test site in Illinois.
Led by the Illinois State Geological Survey, the Illinois Basin–Decatur Project is the first demonstration-scale project in the United States to use CO2 from an industrial source and inject it into a saline reservoir. The CO2 is being captured from an ethanol production facility operated by the Archer Daniels Midland Company in Decatur, Ill., and is being injected in a compressed "supercritical" state into the Mount Simon Sandstone reservoir some 7,000 feet below the surface. Injection operations were initiated November 17, 2011, with an average injection rate of 1,000 metric tons (1,100 short tons) daily. Full story
Illinois Basin - Decatur Project Recognition
The Illinois Basin - Decatur Project was recognized in October 2012 by the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum (CSLF) at its meeting in Perth, Australia for making significant contributions to the development of global carbon dioxide mitigation technologies. The projects will appear in a yearly project portfolio on the CSFL website to keep the global community updated on progress.
The CSLF is an international climate change initiative that focuses on the development of technologies to cost-effectively capture, utilize, and store CO2. Member countries include the United States, the European Union, and 23 other countries that together account for 75 percent of all global anthropogenic CO2 emissions and aim to collaborate on mitigation efforts. For more information, please visit the CSLF website (http://www.cslforum.org).
Update from the Illinois Basin - Decatur Project
Injection at the MGSC’s Illinois Basin - Decatur Project (IBDP) is nearing the halfway point of our million tonne planned injection with more than 420,000 tonnes of CO2 injected. We will be starting our second 3D vertical seismic profile in late March 2013, with the expectation that the plume will be visible and can be tracked with these new data. Brine sampling in the subsurface, well logging in cased hole, and soil and groundwater sampling in the near surface have shown that the carbon dioxide is contained within the target reservoir and no indication of leakage has been found.
2012 Midwest Carbon Sequestration
The Midwest Geological Sequestration Consortium (MGSC), the Sequestration Training and Education Program (STEP) and Schlumberger Carbon Services welcomed 120 participants to the 2012 Midwest Carbon Sequestration Science Conference, September 17-19, 2012.
The past year marked several significant milestones for the MGSC and the IBDP, carried out in collaboration with Archer Daniels Midland Company in Decatur, Illinois. Operational injection began on November 17, 2011 and is rapidly approaching the 300,000 tonnes mark. This conference showcased current research by project partners as well as gave participants an opportunity to visit the project site to gain firsthand knowledge of our working CCS site. The first afternoon of the conference, STEP hosted a workshop featuring international CCS projects and perspectives. The second day of the conference featured a full day of presentations on the IBDP 1-million tonne saline reservoir injection demonstration, including geology, geophysics, environmental monitoring, outreach/education, and compression/infrastructure. We also summarized our Phase II Enhanced Oil Recovery pilot tests that are now completed. The third day of the conference included a guided field trip to the IBDP project site at the Archer Daniels Midland Company in Decatur. At the well site, participants viewed real-time well data from the RTAC data collection system; were taken to the verification well to view on-going MVA programs; and were taken to the compression and dehydration facilities within the ADM complex.
A unique feature of this conference was the increased international participation, which allowed outstanding networking opportunities. Twenty-five percent of the conference attendees were from outside of the United States and included representation from Republic of Korea, South Africa, China, Germany, Norway, Canada, Japan, and the United Kingdom.
Click here for conference presentations.
The National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academy of Sciences releases Seismic Report
The National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academy of Sciences released a report on June 15, 2012 entitled "Induced Seismicity Potential in Energy Technologies." This report addresses potential induced (human-made) seismicity caused by such energy technologies as Geothermal Fluid Production, Enhanced Oil Recovery, Hydraulic Fracturing, and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS).
The report finds that only a very small fraction of injection and extraction activities at hundreds-of-thousands of energy development sites in the United States have induced seismicity at levels that are detectable by humans. The report points out, however, that no large-volume CCS storage sites have been developed and tested.
The NRC report goes on to note the need for significant amounts of continued research on the potential for induced seismicity in large, commercial-scale CCS projects. However, the report highlights the importance of what it classifies as small-scale research projects currently underway, such as the Illinois Basin - Decatur Project (IBDP) that will provide important field data and lead to the development of best practices.
Click here for full story.
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Midwest Geological Sequestration Consortium
University of Illinois
615 E. Peabody Dr.
Champaign, IL 61820