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Carbon Capture, Utilization, & Storage

Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage (CCUS) is the process by which carbon dioxide (CO2) is removed from industrial sources, transported, and either stored for further commercial use or injected underground for long-term geologic sequestration. In Ohio, coal-fired power plants, steel mills, and fertilizer plants generate the largest amounts of carbon dioxide. Many scientists consider efficient and economic management of CO2 emissions as being essential if the nation and the world continue to depend on combustion of coal, oil, and natural gas for generation of electricity. In the near future, management of greenhouse-gas emissions through geologic sequestration may become a major consideration for Ohio’s industries.

The Division of Geological Survey has established itself as the leader in Ohio for geologic CO2-sequestration research over the last 20 years. In the early 2000s, Ohio was involved in one of the first CO2-sequestration projects in the world, MIDCARB. From 2003 through 2020, Ohio was part of a very influential partnership called the Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership (MRCSP). The MRCSP was managed by Battelle Memorial Institute with Ohio initially serving as the geologic team lead in the eight-state region, which also included Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. MRCSP conducted regional and site-specific characterization for geologic CO2-sequestration, along with performing small-scale CO2-injection tests in Ohio.

The Division of Geological Survey was an important member of Ohio’s FutureGen task force (FGTF) from 2004 through early 2006. FutureGen was a $1 billion public/private-sector partnership to build a prototype power plant to: (1) demonstrate advanced coal-based technologies for generation of electricity and (2) produce hydrogen for fuel-cell technology to be used by the transportation and power-generation industries. Another goal of FutureGen was to demonstrate technologies for capture of carbon emissions and geologic carbon sequestration. Because of the geologic CO2-sequestration component of the facility, the Division was heavily involved in selecting suitable sites for Ohio’s two proposals for this nationwide search. While Ohio was not chosen as a finalist for this project, the work of the statewide FGTF proved very valuable in many regards. It brought many important state agencies together to start examining the issue of future energy projects and carbon sequestration. As a result of the FGTF efforts the Ohio legislature appropriated funds to drill a deep test well in Tuscarawas County, which the Division and its partner Battelle completed in 2008.

Starting in 2020, Ohio entered into a new expanded partnership, the Midwest Region Carbon Initiative (MRCI). This new partnership, encompassing 20 states and led by Battelle, has a goal to accelerate CCUS deployment in the Midwestern and Northeastern United States. MRCI builds upon more than 20 years of CCUS experience from the MRCSP partnership, with plans on advancing CCUS research and large-scale deployment throughout the region.

Additional Resources

Ohio CCUS Reports

ODNR Division of Geological Survey Open File Report OFR 2002-2: Preliminary assessment of potential injection strata for carbon dioxide sequestration at New Haven, West Virginia (2002)

ODNR Division of Geological Survey Open-File Report 2005-1: Characterization of geologic sequestration opportunities in the MRCSP Region (2010)

ODNR Division of Geological Survey Open File Report OFR 2008-1: Geological assessment of the Burger Power Plant and surrounding vicinity for potential injection of carbon dioxide (2008)

MRCSP Phase II Topical Report October 2005-October 2010: Characterization of geologic sequestration opportunities in the MRCSP region: Middle Devonian - Middle Silurian Formations (2010)

ODNR Division of Geological Survey Open File Report 2011-2:  Silurian “Clinton” sandstone reservoir characterization for the evaluation of CO2-EOR potential in the East Canton Oil Field, Ohio (2011)

ODNR Division of Geological Survey Open-File Report 2011-3: Geologic assessment of the Ohio Geological Survey CO2 No. 1 well in Tuscarawas County and surrounding vicinity (2011)

ODNR Division of Geological Survey, Geological Note GN-13: High-resolution stratigraphy and subsurface mapping of the lower part of the Huron Member of the Ohio Shale in central and eastern Ohio allow for detailed snapshots of basin development (2017)

Other Publications

Division of Geological Survey Publications Catalog

OSU Knowledge Bank

State Library of Ohio Digital Collection