Earthquake Potential of Carbon Sequestration?
Source: Jonny Rutqvist and Dan Hawkes
An article appearing earlier this past week (January 24, 2015) in Science News by noted science journalist (and former S.F. Chronicle reporter) Charles Petit discusses geological carbon sequestration and its potential for triggering earthquakes. Within the article, ESD’s Jonny Rutqvist is mentioned prominently as the leader of several modeling studies (also involving ESD’s Antonio Rinaldi and Frederic Cappa) investigating “multiple scenarios of how sustained large-scale deep injections of CO2 [underground] might work out.” Summarizing Rutqvist’s results, the article states that “while some earthquakes big enough to alarm local people (magnitude 3.0 to 4.5 at most) appear inevitable, very few would be large enough to damage buildings,” and that “very few if any quakes would open paths for significant CO2 to escape.”
- Rutqvist, J. (2012), The geomechanics of CO2 storage in deep sedimentary formations. International Journal of Geotechnical and Geological Engineering, 30, 525–551. (http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10706-011-9491-0)
- Rutqvist J., F. Cappa, A.P. Rinaldi, and M. Godano (2014), Modeling of induced seismicity and ground vibrations associated with geologic CO2 storage, and assessing their effects on surface structures and human perception. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, 24, 64–77. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1750583614000553)
- Rinaldi A.P., J. Rutqvist, and F. Cappa (2014), Geomechanical effects on CO2 leakage through fault zones during large-scale underground injection. International Journal of Greenhouse Gas Control, 20, 117–131. (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1750583613003848)