November 2, 2022
Journal Article

Exotic Carbonate Mineralization Recovered from a Deep Basalt Carbon Storage Demonstration


Mitigating climate change require transformational advances for carbon dioxide removal, including geologic carbon sequestration in reactive subsurface environments. The Wallula Basalt Carbon Storage Pilot Project demonstrated that CO2 injected into >800 m deep Columbia River Basalt Group flow top reservoirs mineralizes on month-year timescales. Herein, we present new optical petrography, micro-computed X-ray tomography, and electron microscopy results sidewall cores collected two years after CO2 injection. As no other anthropogenic carbonates from geologic carbon storage field studies have been recovered, this world-unique sample suite provides unparalleled insight for subsurface carbon mineralization products and paragenesis. Chemically-zoned nodules with Ca/Mn-rich cores and Fe-dominant outer rims are prominent examples of the neoformed carbonate assemblages with ankerite-siderite compositions and exotic divalent cation correlations. Paragenetic insights for the timing of aragonite, silica, and fibrous zeolites are clarified based on mineral texture and spatial relationships, along with time-resolved downhole fluid sampling. Collectively, these results clarify the mineralogy, chemistry, and paragenesis of carbon mineralization, providing insight into the ultimate fate and transport of CO2 in reactive mafic-ultramafic reservoirs

Published: November 2, 2022


Polites E.G., H.T. Schaef, J.A. Horner, A.T. Owen, J.E. Holliman, B.P. McGrail, and Q. Miller. 2022. Exotic Carbonate Mineralization Recovered from a Deep Basalt Carbon Storage Demonstration. Environmental Science & Technology 56, no. 20:14713–14722. PNNL-SA-172801. doi:10.1021/acs.est.2c03269

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