CCUS Western States


Arizona has potential to capture, transport and store anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) in Cenozoic sedimentary basins of the Basin and Range Province and the Colorado Plateau (Figure 1). As part of CUSP, the Arizona Geological Survey (AZGS) at the University of Arizona will evaluate new potential targets and augment and refine existing storage targets for Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (CCUS).

Arizona’s Cenozoic basins and Colorado Plateau host thick sedimentary sequences and geologic structures with the potential to store CO2 in strata saturated with saline groundwater reservoirs. Arizona also hosts very thick salt bodies and buried basalt flows capable of sealing and storing CO2 at depths beyond 2,600 ft (800 m); the threshold depth for formation of supercritical CO2. Strong support from neighboring CUSP state partners, coupled with major transportation and pipeline corridors connecting Arizona regionally, help position Arizona as having long-term CCUS potential.

As part of AZGS and CUSP efforts, subsurface data will be utilized for a machine-readable, open-access regional database with vetted, high-quality subsurface geology, infrastructure, industrial, and relatable databases for reservoir characterization to inform decision-making by stakeholders in the oil and gas industry, regulators, federal, state, and tribal governments. Investing CCUS in Arizona benefits companies able to take advantage of tax credits in and adjacent to AZ, the AZ economy, and the climate. For additional information about Arizona basin analysis and carbon sequestration studies please visit:

Figure 1. Statewide compilation of Arizona’s physiographic provinces (gray), major CO2 emission sources (red circles), Cenozoic basins in Arizona identified as having CO2 storage potential (WESTCARB basins orange, CUSP basins of interest in dark green, other deep sedimentary basins with storage volume below 800 m depth in light green), and natural gas and petroleum pipelines (red lines).

Brian Gootee – State Lead
Phil Pearthree – State Director
Lisa Thompson – Research Geologist
Tawnya Wilson – Research Geologist