Illustration of example carbon sequestration possibilities for a cement manufacturing plant. Saline aquifer, salt bed, depleted oil and gas reservoirs, and coal beds are potential places to sequester carbon.

Carbon Sequestration

  • Process removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and stores it.
  • Carbon can be stored in geologic formations.
  • Geologic carbon sequestration can pose a risk to underground sources of drinking water.

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What Is the Relationship Between Energy, Water Resources and Climate Change?

Carbon Sequestration

Carbon sequestration is one method that will decrease the greenhouse gas emissions of conventional energy sources. Carbon sequestration is the process of removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere or capturing it at the source and storing it.

Geologic sequestration is the process of injecting carbon dioxide (CO2) from a source, such as a coal-fired electric generating power plant, through a well into the deep subsurface. With proper site selection and management, geologic sequestration could play a major role in reducing the net emissions of CO2.

While carbon sequestering practices could lessen the release of greenhouse gases, the effect of carbon sequestration on water resources is not clear. The geologic injection process might pollute ground water with carbon dioxide and brines (IPCC, 2005, p. 31).


IPCC. 2005. IPCC Special Report on Carbon Dioxide Capture and Storage. Prepared by Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. [Metz, B., O. Davidson, H. de Coninck, M. Loos, and L. Meyer (eds.)]. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USA, accessed August 31, 2009. Exit EPA Disclaimer

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Section 33 of 50