(Buffalo, Wyo.) – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Buffalo Field Office (BFO) in cooperation with Wyoming State Geological Survey (WSGS), announced the release of the Updated Open-File Report13-01: 2012 Coalbed Natural Gas (CBNG) Regional Groundwater Monitoring Report Update: Powder River Basin (PRB), Wyo.

This updated report presents data from BLM’s deep monitoring well network in the Wyoming PRB along with initial interpretations.  This data was collected from the monitor system through 2012. This updated version includes improved graphics and more complete individual monitor well reports as well as comparisons to CBNG well production within a 1.5 mile radius of influence.

The BLM BFO deep monitoring well network measures the drawdown in the producing zones and provides data with which to evaluate potential leakage between the CBNG water-producing coal deposits and adjacent sandstone aquifers.  Groundwater models and drawdown predictions are used to forecast potential hydrogeological impacts of CBNG production in Wyoming.  BLM deep monitoring well data can be used to evaluate impact analysis and provide calibration data for future analysis of CBNG drawdown impacts as well as verify the assumptions made in the PRB Final Environmental Impact Statement, 2003.

The report found that the Big George Coal showed continued decline in groundwater levels as gas production increased, and the Upper Wyodak showed areas of groundwater recovery where gas production has ceased or is declining.

The report is available at: http://www.wsgs.uwyo.edu/Public-Info/OnlinePubs/OFR-2013-01.aspx.