We developed a multicomponent, 1D advective transport model that describes the downgradient evolution of solute concentrations, 87Sr/86Sr ratios, and δ11B values in the Wyodak-Anderson Coal Bed (WACB) aquifer located in the Powder River Basin, Wyoming, USA. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the chemical vulnerability of groundwater to potential environmental change stemming from the extraction of coal bed methane and shale gas. Model calculations demonstrate that coupling between microbial activity and the dissolved carbonate system controls major ion transport in the WACB aquifer. The analysis of 87Sr/86Sr ratios further reveals the importance of ion-exchange reactions. Similarly, δ11B data emphasize the significance of pH-dependent surface reactions and demonstrate the vulnerability of the aquifer to the long-term acidification of recharge water.
Lemarchand D., Jacobson A. D., Cividini D., Chabaux F. (2015): The major ion, 87Sr/86Sr, and δ11B geochemistry of groundwater in the Wyodak-Anderson Coal Bed aquifer (Powder River Basin, Wyoming, USA). Comptes Rendus Geoscience 347: 348-357. DOI: 10.1016/j.crte.2015.05.007