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The Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership recognizes that both the Devonian Oriskany Sandstone and the Silurian Salina Group offer potential for subsurface carbon dioxide storage in northern West Virginia. The Silurian–Devonian Helderberg Group lies stratigraphically between these two units, and consequently, its potential as a geologic seal must be evaluated. Predominantly a carbonate interval with minor interbedded siliciclastics and chert, the Helderberg Group was deposited in an ancient epeiric sea. Although most previous investigations of this unit have concentrated on outcrops in eastern West Virginia, new information is available from an injection well drilled along the Ohio River at First Energy's R. E. Burger electric power plant near Shadyside, Ohio. Geophysical, seismic, and core data from this well have been combined with existing outcrop information to evaluate the Helderberg Group's potential as a seal. The data collected suggest that only secondary porosity remains, and permeability, if it exists, most likely occurs along faults or within fractures.
J. Eric Lewis received his B.S. degree in geology from West Virginia University and is currently working on his M.S. degree there as well. He is a geologist in the oil and gas program at the West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey and researches petroleum geology and carbon sequestration in the Appalachian Basin.
Ronald McDowell received a B.S. degree in electrical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.S. degree and Ph.D. in geology from the University of Kansas and the Colorado School of Mines, respectively. He has managed gold exploration activities in Canada and also directed the development of commercial mapping software. He joined the West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey in 1991 and heads the general geoscience section.
Katharine Lee Avary is a petroleum geologist and manager of the oil and gas program at the West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey. She received a B.S. degree in geology from Emory University and an M.S. degree in geology from the University of North Carolina. Her expertise is in subsurface stratigraphy and petroleum geology of the Appalachian Basin, with a focus on unconventional reservoirs, including shales, tight sands, and coalbed methane.
Kristin Carter joined the Pennsylvania Geological Survey in 2001 and currently serves as chief of the carbon sequestration section. Kristin researches oil, gas, and subsurface geology in Pennsylvania and surrounding states, particularly as they relate to geologic carbon sequestration opportunities. Kristin received an M.S. degree in geological sciences from Lehigh University and a B.S. degree in geology and environmental science from Allegheny College.