Webinar 2: Innovative approaches to monitoring the subsurface: A naturally-occurring gas seep in the French Alps

Wednesday, April 14, 2021 - 10:00

The second webinar presented studies undertaken by SECURe (Subsurface Evaluation of CCS and Unconventional Risks) project partners on a site in France, in order to develop strategies for environmental baseline assessment, which cover the full project lifecycle – from operational to post operational – and can be applied to different scales of project. The research also involves developing state-of-the-art sensors to monitor flow leaks ​using gas composition and changes in microbiology. The novel technologies will expand the suite of methodologies used for detecting gas seeps and leakages. The SECURe project has gathered scientific evidence relating to monitoring the environment and mitigating risk in order to guide subsurface geoenergy development. 

The three-year project will produce a set of best practice recommendations for establishing environmental baseline conditions for unconventional hydrocarbon production and the geological storage of anthropogenic CO2, including outputs addressing how to develop effective communications strategies with different stakeholder groups. The two technologies have different applications and end results while sharing some similarities in approach, which necessitate safe and monitored deployment. 






Chair: Wolfram Kloppmann, BRGM

  • Introduction and overview of the SECURe project – Chair
  • Isotope investigations - Jurgen Foeken, TNO 
  • Multiscale sensing - Wolfram Kloppmann, BRGM 
  • Microbiology of the Fontaine Ardent gas seep and their biosensor potential - Megan Barnett, BGS 
  • Q&A 
  • Closing remarks - Chair

Speaker bios:

Dr Wolfram Kloppmann joined the French geological survey BRGM in 1996. Head of the Isotope Unit and laboratory of BRGM from 2011 to 2017. His specialties include chemistry and isotope characteristics of deep natural groundwaters and gases, water-rock interactions in aquifers, isotope fingerprinting of water contaminants, paleohydrology, traceability of geomaterials in particular in the field of cultural heritage, and degradation of building stones. Most of his research work involved the use of environmental isotopes. Coordinator of the BRGM research programme on non-conventional water resources and alternative concepts of water management (2006-2011). He participated in numerous EU projects under the 5th to  8th (H2020) Framework Programme as project coordinator or work-package leader. Coordinator of the ANR-NSERC Franco-Canadian G-Baseline project on baseline determination for impact assessment in the field of unconventional hydrocarbons. 

Dr Jurgen Foeken is a geologist at the Dutch institute for Applied Research (TNO) with specialization is isotope geochemistry. His interests lie in using isotope methods to understand geological process from hydrocarbon source rock expulsion, migration of the gas/oil through the subsurface to reservoir characterization such as reservoir diagenesis.

Dr Megan Barnett is a geomicrobiologist at the British Geological Survey and is involved in biotechnology developments such as development of microbiological methane sensors and bioleaching of critical metals.  Megan has interests in how microbiology changes during anthropogenic disturbance of the subsurface, and how this effect may be advantageous or detrimental to the desired subsurface industry.