Impact of Reservoir Characterization, Field Activities, and Monitoring Results on Numerical Modeling and Forecasting of a Saline Carbon Dioxide Storage Project
Carbon Management Technology Conference
The challenge of designing monitoring, verification, and accounting (MVA) protocols for carbon capture storage and utilization (CCUS) projects is significant. Initial monitoring programs are based on cursory understandings of the subsurface, often encapsulated through numerical modeling studies that seek to forecast project performance. Further, the monitoring budget is not without limits. As such, choices are made based on the perceived value of the technology in terms of price and expected results, which are often captured in the monitoring requirements portion of the underground injection control (UIC) permit.
Selecting the most appropriate technologies is paramount in understanding the evolution of the CO2 injection project. With improved surveillance data, comes improved understanding of the evolution of the CO2 plume through history matching results and, as a result, increased confidence in the forecasting the longer-term movement of the CO2 in-situ. Making the correct choices prior to the beginning of the project can greatly improve the value proposition provided by the MVA protocols. The wrong choice, on a large-scale project, can expend millions of dollars without returning any value.
This paper will look back on a ten-year CO2 injection pilot project, supported by research dollars provided by the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory (DOE NETL) as part of their Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships (RCSPs), to understand the value of field-deployed monitoring data and its impact on improving the understanding of the development and movement of the CO2 plume. To do so, we will thoroughly investigate the numerical modeling alterations performed to history match the performance of the project in support of field characterization, MVA data collection, as well as field operations.