Geological Carbon Sequestration: Geoscience Initiatives for a Macroenvirnmental Problem
Julio Friedmann
University of Maryland

Geological carbon capture and storage (carbon sequestration) has become one of the most promising and widely embraced means of mitigating the emissions of greenhouse gases, chiefly CO2. This is in large part due to the large capacity and use of established technology involved. However, there remain significant and serious geoscience challenges to the large-scale deployment of carbon storage, which should be undertaken now to improve the chances of technical success. Key geoscience questions surround each potential geological reservoir (saline aquifers, depleted oil & gas fields, unmineable coal seams, oil shales, and large mafic rock bodies), many of them shared (e.g., improved understanding of fracture networks). Beyond that, capacity estimates need revision, measurement, monitoring, and verification technologies (MMV) require calibration and development, and biogeochemical issues addressed. Most importantly, accurate and precise subsurface mapping will determine the success or failure of any large-scale initiative.

Julio Friedmann received his B.S. and M.S. from MIT, and his Ph.D. from the Univ. of Southern California. After working at Exxon and ExxonMobil's upstream research centers, he is now at the University of Maryland in College Park.