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Wyoming Carbon Underground Storage Project

The Carbon Management Institute (CMI) currently leads the Wyoming Carbon Underground Stor­age Project (WY-CUSP), a pioneering three-year research project designed to characterize two potential carbon storage reservoirs (the Weber Sandstone and Madison Limestone, both deep saline aquifers) on the Rock Springs Uplift in southwestern Wyoming. Preliminary estimates suggest that together, these reservoirs could safely store 13 billion tons of CO2 thousands of feet below the closest drinking water aquifers. Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and the State of Wyoming, WY-CUSP involves scientists from UW and Los Alamos National Laboratory, along with industry partners Baker Hughes, Geokinetics, EMTEK, ExxonMobil, and others.

Through extensive field and laboratory research, sophisticated digital modeling and analysis, and exacting risk assessment protocols, WY-CUSP will produce a detailed site characterization of the two deep saline aquifers on the Rock Springs Uplift for potential pilot- and commercial-scale CO2 storage. A comprehensive description of these aquifers will provide baseline assessments that could directly support future industrial carbon capture and storage operations in the region. In addition, the WY-CUSP team will design a strategy to treat the saline water displaced from the target storage reservoirs by injected CO2. WY-CUSP research is vital to reducing uncertainty and determining the feasibility of geologic CO2 storage in Wyoming.


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