Assessment of CO2 Sequestration and Enhanced Coalbed Methane Potential in Unminable Coal Seams of the Illinois Basin

Maria Mastalerz, John Rupp, Agnieszka Drobniak, Satya Harpalani, Andrew Anderson, Christopher P. Korose, Scott M. Frailey, David G. Morse

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The Illinois Basin (Indiana, Illinois, and western Kentucky) holds substantial Pennsylvanian coal resources of high volatile bituminous rank, but much of this resource is considered to be too deep or too thin for economic mining. Sequestration of CO2 within the unminable parts of these coalbeds is one of the geological options considered for future isolation of CO2. The remaining coal resource in the basin is newly estimated for this study at 413 billion t (455 billion tons) ofwhich 142 billion t (157 billion tons) (or 34.5%)meets the minable criteria of being less than 305m(1000 ft) deep and greater than 1.1 m (3.5 ft) thick. Thus, 271 billion t (298 billion tons) are potentially available as a CO2 sequestration reservoir. The estimated CO2 storage capacity of the unminable coals in the Illinois Basin is 3.63 billion t (4 billion tons). In addition to storing CO2, these coals are also targets for enhanced coalbed methane production, with an estimated volume of 6.68 tcf (189 billionm3) of recoverable methane. For the coals studied, the adsorption capacities for CO2 are three to six times greater than for methane (CH4). Experiments demonstrate that swelling and shrinkage of the Illinois Basin coals after injection ofCO2 are considerable, indicating the possibility of permeability damage following CO2 injection. Key parameters that influence gas adsorption capacities were mapped for the Danville, Hymera, Herrin, Springfield, Survant, Colchester, and Seelyville coal members, including thickness, depth, elevation, moisture and ash, vitrinite reflectance, and temperature and pressure.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCarbon Dioxide Sequestration in Geological Media—State of the Science
EditorsMatthias Grobe, Jack C. Pashin, Rebecca L. Dodge
PublisherAmerican Association of Petroleum Geologists
ISBN (Electronic)9781629810317
ISBN (Print)9780891810667
StatePublished - 2009

Publication series

NameAAPG Studies in Geology


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