A Selection Criterion for CO₂-Enhanced Oil Recovery and Dispersion Modeling of High-Pressure CO₂ Release


The use of miscible carbon dioxide (CO2) flooding has increased significantly in the past decade. What makes CO2 unique is its low miscibility pressure, which extends the candidacy of CO2 to reservoirs with lower API gravity, shallower depths and lower fracture pressure gradients compared to reservoirs in which miscible nitrogen or miscible hydrocarbon flooding might be used. Furthermore, the financial incentives associated with the removal of a greenhouse gas offset development costs and operating expenditures. Therefore, this paper focuses primarily on selection criteria for CO2 Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) and the dispersion modeling of high-pressure CO2 release, as these are critical in offsetting capital investments and managing legal liabilities. The available EOR selection criteria, which are based on reported EOR projects were developed initially by Taber in 1983 and then updated by Taber et al. in 1996 and again by Aladasani & Bai in 2010. Recent publications by Aladasani & Bai (2011) regarding discussions surrounding EOR selection criteria focus on dataset distribution to refine EOR candidacy selection. The work presented in this paper further develops the tools with which to screen miscible CO2 for EOR applications by offering detailed distributions and correlations of reservoir properties reported in miscible CO2 projects, as well as a prediction model for miscible CO2 recovery. The screening tools presented in this paper are intended as a new detailed and systematic approach to selecting miscible CO2 flooding and to developing EOR as a whole. The increase in Carbon Sequestration Projects (CSP) and CO2 EOR projects has resulted in the expansion of the CO2 pipeline network in the United States (US). An overview of the CO2 network in the US, the transit pipeline incident history in North America and Europe, and the scope of pipeline risk studies are presented. Finally, recent developments in CO2 consequence modeling inform the dispersion modeling of critical CO2 releases, highlighting the toxicity risk of H2S in anthropogenic CO2 streams.

Meeting Name

Society of Petroleum Engineers Western Regional Meeting (2012: Mar. 21-23, Bakersfield, CA)


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Api Gravities; Capital Investment; Carbon Sequestration; Consequence Modeling; Data Sets; Development Costs; Dispersion Modeling; Enhanced Oil Recovery; Financial Incentives; Legal Liability; Pipeline Networks; Prediction Model; Reservoir Property; Screening Tool; Selection Criteria; Forestry; Greenhouse Gases; Hydrocarbon Refining; Hydrocarbons; Mathematical Models; Petroleum Reservoir Evaluation; Pipelines; Reservoirs (Water); Carbon Dioxide

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


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© 2012 Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Mar 2012