Geological CO2 storage and shale gas exploitation: Monitoring methods to be used for at the different project phases

Within the context of continuously increasing CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere, as well as diminishing reserves of fossil fuels, finding new ways for autarkic and “climate friendly” energy production becomes more and more important. The development of emerging subsurfaces activities like Carbone Capture and Storage, and Hydraulic Fracturation might offer new options to tackle all three of the mentioned challenges. But, carbon capture and storage (CCS) and unconventional gas exploration (“hydro-fracking”) have in common that they impact parts of the subsurface and may thus potentially have an effect on fresh water aquifers. The combination of all the most recent studies about GCS and Hydro-fracking, allows the identification of a broad panel of key parameters that can assess and indicate a groundwater contamination resulting from emerging subsurface activities. Strong emphasis needs to be put on the fact that numerous new monitoring, verification and accounting tools are being developed worldwide threw researches programs. However, actually, it seems that the most efficient monitoring and early warning network should be based on the combined used of the most suitable (site-specific) geophysics and geochemicals tools.

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