April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2023
Principle Investigators: Dr. Susan D. Hovorka, Dr. Timothy ‘Tip’ Meckel, and Ramón H. Treviño
The goal of the GoMCarb Partnership is to ensure the safe, long-term, and economically-viable offshore storage of carbon in the Gulf of Mexico region
GoMCarb and a concurrent partnership led by SECARB focuses on the assessment of offshore (sub-seafloor) geologic carbon storage beneath the Gulf of Mexico. The offshore region provides unique challenges to carbon storage, but also unique opportunities.
The GoMCarb partnership compiles data and expertise in the region, integrating academic research institutions, government entities, and industry affiliates to address knowledge gaps, regulatory issues, infrastructure requirements, and geologic and engineering technical challenges of storing carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas emitted to the atmosphere during energy production. While carbon capture and storage (or CCS) has been researched for almost 20 years, only recently have the opportunities and advantages of offshore storage a kilometer or more beneath the seafloor of the Gulf of Mexico been identified.
- Study Area
- Offshore Storage Resources
- Risk Assessment, Simulation, Modeling
- Monitoring, Verification, Assessment
- Infrastructure, Operations, Permitting
The potential best management practices (BMPs) pertaining to activities associated with CO2 transport and storage in offshore settings can be found here: https://marinecadastre.gov/espis/#/search/study/27007
Why far below the Gulf of Mexico?
The states bordering the Gulf of Mexico (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida) emit a large proportion of total U.S. CO2 emissions from industrial sources, but the surrounding offshore geology also provides some of the greatest potential for CO2 storage.
As one of the most explored subsurface geologic basins in the world (for oil and natural gas), the GoM is data-rich and well-understood with large storage resources and high quality seals. The Gulf of Mexico (GoM) offshore basin is one of the largest volume regional geologic sinks in the United States for large-scale CCS activities.
Offshore geologic reservoirs deep underground provide the most viable near-term, low-cost and low-risk storage options, lowering geologic barriers to large-scale implementation and increasing the possibility of significant CO2 emission reduction and commercial development in the region. Lessons learned in the Gulf of Mexico could be transferred to other national offshore areas in the future.
Major reductions in national emissions could be achieved by further developing offshore storage options through integration of capture, transport, and permanent geologic storage.
April 5, 6, and 7th, 2023: The 2023 GoMCarb Annual Partership Meeting was held in Austin, TX. The agenda and publicly available presentations can be viewed here.
May 18, 2022: See agenda and presentations here from the 2022 GoMCarb Annual Partnership Meeting held in New Orleans, LA.
March 26–27, 2020: Read about the 2nd Annual GoMCarb & SECARB Offshore Joint Partnership Meeting from a previous GCCC blog that is now archived on Texas Scholar Works here.
February 11–12, 2020: Find resources here from the Fourth International Offshore Geologic CO2 Storage Workshop.
December 9, 2019: Press release: Research shows ramping up carbon capture could be key to mitigating climate change
May 3–4, 2019: Find resources here from the Third International Offshore Geologic CO2 Storage Workshop.
February 11–12, 2019: Read the report here from the 1st Annual GoMCarb & SECARB Offshore Joint Partnership Meeting.
December 4, 2017: Press release: UT Bureau of Economic Geology Granted $4 Million to Run Carbon Capture Partnership
Papers in Descending Chronological Order
Meckel, T.A., Beckham, E.C., 2023, High-resolution geologic modeling and CO2 flow simulation of a realistic clastic deltaic 3D model derived from a laboratory flume tank experiment: International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, v. 125, p. 1–16, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijggc.2023.103892.
Meckel, T. A., Treviño, R. H., Hovorka, S. D., and Bump, A. P., 2023, Mapping existing wellbore locations to compare technical risks between onshore and offshore CCS activities in Texas: Greenhouse Gases: Science and Technology, p. 1–12, http://doi.org/10.1002/ghg.2220.
Ni, H., Bakhshian, S., and Meckel, T.A., 2023, Effects of grain size and small-scale bedform architecture on CO2 saturation from buoyancy-driven flow: Scientific Reports, v. 13, no. 2474, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-023-29360-y.
Trimeric, 2022, Existing Infrastructure Memorandum EDX.
Trimeric, 2022, Infrastructure’s Potential Re-use for Future CCS Projects Memorandum EDX.
Ulfah, M., Hosseini, S., Hovorka, S., Bump, A., Bakhshian, S., and Dunlap, D., 2022, Assessing Impacts on Pressure Stabilization and Leasing Acreage for CO2 Storage Utilizing Oil Migration Concepts: International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, v. 115, 103612, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijggc.2022.103612.
Bump, A. P., Hovorka, S. D., and Meckel, T.A., 2021, Common risk segment mapping: streamlining exploration for carbon storage sites, with application to coastal Texas and Louisiana: International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, v. 111, 13 p., http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijggc.2021.103457.
Madugula, A. C. S., Sachde, D., Hovorka, S. D., Meckel, T. A., and Benson, T. J., 2021, Estimation of CO2 emissions from petroleum refineries based on the total operable capacity for carbon capture applications: Chemical Engineering Journal Advances, v. 8, 9 p., http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ceja.2021.100162.
Meckel, T. A., Bump, A. P., Hovorka, S. D., and Treviño, R. H., 2021, Carbon capture, utilization, and storage hub development on the Gulf Coast: Greenhouse Gases: Science and Technology, v. 11, p. 619–632, http://doi.org/10.1002/ghg.2082.
Ni, H., and Meckel, T. A., 2021, Characterizing the effect of capillary heterogeneity on multiphase flow pulsation in an intermediate-scale beadpack experiment using time series clustering and frequency analysis: Water Resources Research, v. 57, 17 p., http://doi.org/10.1029/2021WR030876.
Tavassoli, S., Krishnamurthy, P., Beckham, E., Meckel, T., and Sepehrnoori, K., 2021, Carbon dioxide storage in deltaic saline aquifers: invasion percolation and compositional simulation: Society of Petroleum Engineers Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering, v. 24, 13 p., http://doi.org/10.2118/196723-PA.
Mehana, M., Hosseini, S. A., Meckel, T. A., and Viswanathan, H., 2020, Modeling CO2 plume migration using an invasion-percolation approach that includes dissolution: Greenhouse Gases: Science and Technology, v. 10, p. 283–295, http://doi.org/10.1002/ghg.1976.
DeAngelo, M. V., Fifariz, R., Meckel, T., and Treviño, R. H., 2019, A seismic-based CO2-sequestration regional assessment of the Miocene section, northern Gulf of Mexico, Texas and Louisiana: International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, v. 81, p. 29–37, http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijggc.2018.12.009.
Goudarzi, A., Meckel, T., Hosseini, S. A., and Treviño, R. H., 2019, Statistical analysis of historic hydrocarbon production data from Gulf of Mexico oil and gas fields and application to dynamic capacity assessment in CO2 storage: International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, v. 80, p. 96–102, http://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijggc.2018.11.014.
Ringrose, P. S., and Meckel, T. A., 2019, Maturing global CO2 storage resources on offshore continental margins to achieve 2DS emissions reductions: Scientific Reports, v. 9, http://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-54363-z.
Araque-Martinez, A.N., and Lake, L.W., 2019, "Compressibility Effects on Viscous Instability Under Sealing and Partially Sealing Boundaries, Part I: Tracer Flow": Report for the University of Texas at Austin, Dec. 15, 2019.
Lindsey, N., Dawe, C.T., and Ajo-Franklin, J.B., 2019, Illuminating seafloor faults and ocean dynamics with dark fiber distributed acoustic sensing: Science, v. 366, no. 6469, p. 1103–1107, http://doi.org/10.1126/science.aay5881.
Oldenburg, C.M., and Pan, L., 2019, Major CO2 blowouts from offshore wells are strongly attenuated in water deeper than 50 m: Greenhouse Gases: Science and Technology, v. 10, p. 15–31, 2020, https://doi.org/10.1002/ghg.1943
Ringrose, P.S., and Meckel, T.A. 2019, Maturing global CO2 storage resources on offshore continental margins to achieve 2DS emissions reductions: Scientific Reports, v. 9, p. 17994, doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-54363-z.
GoMCarb-Supported Master’s Theses
Guirola, Marco - 2022 Energy and Earth Resources Master’s Thesis: Estimating Across-Fault Migration Rates and their Financial Implications for CCS with Application to Offshore Gulf of Mexico (download). Advised by Susan D. Hovorka and Alexander P. Bump.
Hull, Harry - 2021 Geological Sciences Master’s Thesis: Characterizing Reservoir Quality for Geologic Storage of CO₂—A Case Study from the Lower Miocene Shore Zone at Matagorda Bay, Texas (download). Advised by Tip Meckel.
Laidlaw, Maddie - 2022 Energy and Earth Resources Master’s Thesis: Evaluating, Risking, and Ranking Carbon Sequestration Buoyant Traps with Application to nearshore Gulf of Mexico (download). Advised by Dr. Alexander P. Bump and Dr. Susan D. Hovorka.
Li, Yushan - 2023 EER Master's Thesis: Assessing an Offshore Carbon Storage Opportunity at Chandeleur Sound, Louisiana (download). Advised by Dr. Susan D. Hovorka.
Prentice, Sarah - 2019 Energy and Earth Resources Master’s Thesis: The Effect of Methane and Fluid Geometry on CO2 Enhanced Oil Recovery (download). Advised by Susan Hovorka, Supervisor and William L. Fisher, Co-Supervisor.
Ruiz, Izaak - 2019 Geological Sciences M.S. Thesis: Characterization of the High Island Field 24L Field for Modeling and Estimating CO2 Storage Capacity in the Offshore Texas State Waters, Gulf of Mexico (download). Advised by Timothy A. Meckel.
Ulfah, Melianna - 2021 Energy and Earth Resources Master’s Thesis: Plume Migration and Pressure Evolution Analyses for Recommendations in Offshore CO2 Storage Acreage Leasing Policy (download). Advised by Susan D. Hovorka.
Offshore Related Master’s Theses
Ogbuabuo, Prisca - 2015 Energy & Earth Resources Master’s Thesis: The Role of Methane in Limiting CO2 EOR: Case Study of Offshore Gulf of Mexico Oil Reservoirs (download). Advised by Larry W. Lake and Rebecca C. Smyth.
Osmond, Johnathon - 2016 Geological Sciences Master’s Thesis: Fault seal and containment failure analysis of a Lower Miocene structure in the San Luis Pass area, offshore Galveston Island, Texas Inner Shelf (download). Advised by Tip Meckel.
Wallace, Kerstan - 2013 Geological Sciences Master’s Thesis: Use of 3-Dimensional Dynamic Modeling of CO2 Injection for Comparison to Regional Static Capacity Assessments of Miocene Sandstone Reservoirs in the Texas State Waters, Gulf of Mexico (download). Advised by Michael H. Young and Tip A. Meckel.
Last Updated: August 25, 2023