Clean & Secure Energy from Domestic Oil Shale & Oil Sands Resources
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V/UQ Analysis of Basin Scale CLEARuff Assessment Tool


Jennifer Spinti, Donatella Pasqualini, Olga Baykova

Project Purpose/Goals

  • Develop a predictive tool for assessing the basin- and regional-scale environmental and economic impacts of unconventional fuel development
  • Perform validation/uncertainty quantification (V/UQ) research to establish the predictive capability of the simulation tools that are developed

Project Sponsor

Department of Energy, National Energy Technology Laboratory

Project Collaborator

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Project Description

The Computational Earth Sciences Group at Los Alamos National Laboratory has recently developed the dynamic, integrated assessment model CLEARuff to evaluate the potential for unconventional fuel development given environmental and economic constraints such as water availability, land use regulations, and size of the local labor pool. This project will develop a methodology for doing V/UQ on system models like CLEARuff. Issues to be considered include: (1) how to systematically determine which of the hundreds of model parameters have the largest effect on outputs of interest such as energy and water demand, (2) what is the distribution of uncertainty ascribed to the various parameters and how can that choice be justified, and (3) how to perform V/UQ on a dynamical system. Because there is no commercial data which can be used for model validation, this project will demonstrate an application of the methodology for conventional oil & gas development during a recent energy boom in Utah's Uinta Basin, specifically focusing on changes in water and energy demand, population, and tax revenues. Work being performed in other projects supported by the Institute for Clean and Secure Energy, including "Life-cycle Greenhouse Gas Analysis of Conventional Oil and Gas Development in the Uinta Basin" and "Development of Conventional Oil and Gas Production Modules for CLEARuff," will be utilized for this project.