The University of Texas at El Paso’s Department of Geological Sciences was awarded $40,000 from the Western States Petroleum Association to review and evaluate work by the California State Water Resources Control Board and the U.S. Geological Survey to study impacts of well stimulation related to oil and gas development in California.
Leading the study is Mark Engle, Ph.D., professor of geological sciences at UTEP. His research focuses on application of geochemistry, hydrogeology and data analysis to examine a broad range of applications.
Engle has conducted research on the hydrogeochemistry of water across geologic basins; the origin, composition, and history of water from oil and gas reservoirs; mathematical and isotopic source apportionment of contaminants in the environment; the emissions of trace and major gases from coal fires; and the emissions and deposition of trace elements.
The main purpose of the grant is to conduct a technical review and analysis of U.S. Geological Survey literature to determine potential scientific issues.
The proposed work includes technical review of related U.S. Geological Survey literature, summary of regional petroleum geology and evidence of natural hydrocarbon migration, production of a white paper summarizing the findings, and presenting results to the U.S. Geological Survey and the California State Water Resources Control Board.
“We look forward to improving the quality of the ongoing projects in California by demonstrating the impact that knowledge on petroleum geology plays when trying to assess impacts from oil and gas activities.”
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Author: Darlene Barajas – UTEP Communications