The United States Department of Energy recently announced the selection of 19 projects, specifically targeting geological carbon dioxide storage. These projects will span the U.S., combating and evaluating the risk of the invisible emissions threat.
Totaling $35.8 million over four years, funded in part by the DOE ($27.6 million) and non-Federal cost sharing ($8.2 million). Unsurprisingly, possibly due to coal and oil interests, Texas is home to several projects.
Managing the work is the Office of Fossil Energy's National Energy Technology Laboratory. Through these projects, green jobs will also be created--to the tune of nearly 100 jobs lasting up to four years.
Several other carbon capture projects could be bursting onto the national stage soon, as they have received over a million from the DOE alone. However, the following projects are intended to monitor, verify and account for geological CO2 storage.
In New York, Columbia University researchers will be working on ways to "tag" CO2 and will be working with a sequestration project in Iceland. Further south in West Virginia, the West Virginia University Research Corporation in Morgantown will place gauges to locate and identify leakages.
In the Woodlands, Texas, Fusion Petroleum Technologies is working on seismic data software to better model CO2 reservoirs. Meanwhile, in Austin, researchers will be working to acquire three-dimensional seismic data for potential CO2 storage. Stanford University will also be working on further seismic mapping and optimizing rock-fluid models.
In Massachusetts, Planetary Emissions Management will be commercializing a carbon-14 field-ready analyzer to detect CO2 leaks from natural geological reservoirs. In Ohio, Schlumberger Carbon Services will be developing methods for carbon leakage quantification in Columbus.
Working on simulation are several schools-- such as the Colorado School of Mines, the Missouri University of Science and Technology and the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology—developing new models for flow and leak stoppage. The Battelle Memorial Institute will be working on developing a framework for geologic CO2 storage that will extend across Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan and Ohio.
The hope is preliminary steps to develop carbon capture and storage models and assess risk-minimization will be hollowed out by these efforts. Two universities (Princeton and U.T.-Austin), GoldSim Technology Group (Washington) and Headwaters Energy Services will all be exploring how to determine and mitigate the environmental and economic effects of carbon dioxide sequester schemes.
While clean energy has often been painted as an escape from an emissions-ridden nightmare scenario, other efforts alongside renewable sources are necessary. With the majority of electricity still coal-dependent, efforts to minimize environmental damage are just as vital to a green economy.
Picture courtesy of Treehugger.
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