The sixth annual WBR Energy Summit kicked off Tuesday afternoon with a bus tour of the Integrated Test Center (ITC) and test well site near Basin Electric Power Cooperative’s Dry Fork Station north of Gillette. Drilling began in late March as part of the second phase to determine the suitability of the underground geological formations for commercial-scale carbon dioxide (CO2) storage in the Powder River Basin as part of the Wyoming CarbonSAFE project led by the University of Wyoming and its partners.
Nearly 50 conference attendees, including Gov. Mark Gordon and State Treasurer Curt Meier, got a first-hand look at the site as University of Wyoming researchers answered questions about the project.
The proposed month-long project ended two days early after 28 days on site, according to Scott Quillinan, director of research with the UW School of Energy Resources, who expected drilling to wrap up last night around midnight. So far, researchers have collected nearly 620 feet of core samples from a depth of around 10,000 feet.
Researchers will now focus on analyzing the samples, the results of which will be made available to the public. Later this year, they will return to collect a 3D seismic survey of the area.
The summit continues Wednesday at the Cam-Plex with several speakers and round table discussions, including keynote speaker Jonathan Weisgall, vice president, legislative & regulatory affairs at Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Richard Horner, director of emerging technology at UW, Landon Stropko, energy lobbyist and former legislative director for Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi, among others.