1 Million Tons of Pressurised CO2 Stored Beneath Decatur, Illinois

It was a tenth of that, 100,000 tons, that caused the Lake Nyos disaster

7000 ft below the city of Decatur, Illinois, population 74,710 people, is a high pressure reservoir which contains 1 million tons of CO2.

From the press release:

One of the largest carbon sequestration projects in the U.S., the Illinois Basin – Decatur Project (IBDP) has reached its goal of capturing 1 million metric tons of carbon dioxide and injecting it deep underground in the Mount Simon Sandstone formation beneath Decatur, Illinois. The project is designed to demonstrate the feasibility of carbon capture and storage. IBDP director Robert Finley talked about the million-ton milestone with News Bureau physical sciences editor Liz Ahlberg. Finley is director of the Advanced Energy Technology Institute at the Illinois State Geological Survey, part of the Prairie Research Institute at Earthquake Best Price: $4.13 Buy New $8.90 (as of 10:35 EST - Details) the University of Illinois.

The reservoir has been created to demonstrate the viability of carbon sequestration – capturing large quantities on carbon, to prevent the CO2 from being emitted into the atmosphere.

The University of Illinois scientists responsible for this demonstration project assure us that the reservoir does not pose a safety threat. According to a University of Illinois press release;

“Extensive monitoring takes place during and after injection to be sure the stored CO2 stays in place. Monitoring techniques include using geophysical technology to confirm the position of the CO2 underground and wells to monitor groundwater and soils. Earthquake Kit, Emerge... Best Price: null Buy New $29.99 (as of 05:40 EST - Details)

No out-of-bounds health, safety or environmental risks were observed from this properly designed and managed storage site. Appropriate risk mitigation and management plans were an integral part of the overall project planning. Extensive monitoring took place before, during and now after the injection to be sure the CO2 stays in place. The first line of monitoring begins deep below the ground, so we know if any leakage occurs long before any CO2 might reach the surface.”


They’re probably right – when you create a demonstration project, a showpiece for what you hope will become a lucrative business, you want to make sure nothing goes wrong. I’m sure that elaborate precautions have been taken to prevent any possibility of adverse news, in the hope that this reservoir will be the first of many.

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