Technology Collaboration Programme by IEA logo

IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme

Category: Uncategorised

The International Energy Agency’s Greenhouse Gas Weyburn?Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project has been involved in measuring and monitoring injection of CO2 into the Weyburn and Midale oilfields in Southeastern Saskatchewan since the year 2000.

As part of this research, an extensive program of sampling soil gases and shallow water wells across the CO2 injection area has been undertaken for almost 10 years. Baselines for CO2 in the soils and wells were taken in multiple locations starting in July, 2001, prior to any injection, and several surveys have been repeated periodically since injection began. The soil gas surveys were conducted by independent research organizations including the British Geological Survey, BRGM (French Geological Survey), and INGV (Italian Geological Survey). These tests (some of which are available in the First Phase Report on the PTRC’s website at all have indicated that soil gases sampled are in the normal range for these soil types given variations in organic matter content, moisture, temperature and seasonal variations. No evidence of CO2 originating from the 1.5 km deep Midale Reservoir (the geological unit at the Weyburn Field) has been observed in any of these surveys undertaken by these international scientific organizations. Similarly shallow well water samples taken repeatedly throughout this study over 10 years have not indicated any evidence of CO2 from the deep geological reservoir.

The report Geochemical Soil Gas Survey conducted by Paul Lafleur of Petro?Find Geochem, Ltd and submitted to Cameron and Jane Kerr is currently in the process of review by the PTRC. A response to this report will be provided once it has been thoroughly reviewed.

In summary, through its extensive measurement and monitoring program – undertaken in co?operation with researchers from tens of organizations including Canadian and international universities, independent research institutions, consultancies, and government agencies – PTRC has never identified a leak of CO2 into the biosphere or soil in the Weyburn?Midale field area, nor in selected sample locations beyond it.

Many of the results related to the final phase of the IEA GHG Weyburn?Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage project are a matter of public record in the scientific literature that has been published and presented at conferences and workshops. A Best Practices Manual, which will help guide other projects in the safe storage of CO2 in depleted oil fields, will be released by the end of 2011. For more information on the Weyburn?Midale project visit the PTRC’s website and publications at

IEAGHG Involvement with the IEAGHG Weyburn-Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project.

Alongside the CO2-EOR activities, operated by Cenovus, there was an accompanying research programme.  This project is an international research programme that is monitoring the storage of CO2 underground at Weyburn. IEAGHG was involved at the outset in setting up this research project, called initially the Weyburn project (First phase) which ran from 2000 to 2004.  A second phase commenced in 2005 called at that time the IEAGHG Weyburn CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project, (“Weyburn project”).  Note: the name changed to the IEAGHG Weyburn-Midale CO2 Monitoring and Storage Project in 2006.   The project is managed by the Petroleum Technology Research Centre (PTRC), based in Regina, Saskatchewan. In the first phase IEAGHG had no formal arrangement with the Weyburn Project.  In 2005 IEAGHG and PTRC signed a memorandum of understanding that covered our activities in the project. The MoU allowed the Weyburn project to use our name (IEAGHG) and logo on literature on technical results from the project; it asked us to organise independent technical reviews of the project which we did in 2003 and 2006, and assist in international dissemination of technical results from the project, which we do through the GHGT conferences, research networks, GHI newsletters and updates to our members.


For further updates and the latest press releases, please visit the PTRC website at