Investigation of possible surface contamination from a deep waste disposal injection well in Northeastern, British Columbia, Canada

In British Columbia, highly saline waste water produced as a by-product of oil and gas operations are injected into deep geological formations via injection wells. The purpose of this research project is to investigate whether or not these injected fluids remain at depth as intended or rather, can return to the surface and contaminate water resources. In particular this project aims to evaluate the role that surrounding active and abandoned wellbores play in acting as vertical conduits for subsurface fluids to leak to the surface. In order to address this question we will focus our study on the largest volume injection well in the province, located in a 50 year old active gas field. This study will help the scientific community to understand the long-term environmental consequences of deep waste disposal, and will provide a base for future policy and decision making.

Joshua Wisen
Faculty Supervisor: 
Romain Chesnaux
Partner University: