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ESD Instrumental in California Well Stimulation Report

Sources: Jens Birkholzer, Dan Krotz, Dan Hawkes

Vol1_well-stimulationcoverThe California Council on Science and Technology (CCST) released the first volume of an independent scientific assessment today on well stimulation in California, including hydraulic fracturing. This volume describes how and where operators deploy these technologies for oil and gas production onshore and offshore in the state, and where the technologies might enable production in the future.

The assessment was prepared for the California Natural Resources Agency in response to Senate Bill 4 (SB 4), which was passed in 2013 by the California Legislature to set the framework for regulation of well stimulation technologies in the state. It is the first volume in a three-volume CCST study that will assess current and potential future practices of well stimulation technologies in the state. Volumes II and III, to be released in the summer of 2015, will evaluate the environmental impacts of well stimulation technologies, identify risks associated with current practices, and identify alternative practices that might limit these risks. The SB 4 study builds on the findings of the CCST report “Advanced Well Stimulation Technologies in California” of August 2014, commissioned by the Federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

Jens Birkolzer

As with that previous BLM report, Volume I of this new report was developed by experts from CCST and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), particularly the Earth Sciences Division (ESD) within the Lab. Authors of Volume I include Jens Birkholzer—project leader for Berkeley Lab and Division Deputy of ESD—as well as ESD scientists Preston Jordan, Jim Houseworth, and Pat Dobson. Other LBNL scientists currently working on Volumes II and III are Will Stringfellow, Charu Varadharajan, Matt Reagan, Bill Foxall, Nate Lindsay, and Corinne Bachmann from ESD, as well as Tom McKone, Randy Maddalena, and Kenneth Kloc from the Environmental Energy Technologies Division (EETD).

Staff_hydraul_fractTo read the report and more about the report, go to:

To read the BLM report released this past August (2014), go to:

To read about that previous report, go to:

To read the related Today at Berkeley Lab (TABL) article, go to:

For more information on and press coverage of the report: