San Joaquin Geological Society Bakersfield California
Supporting professionals and education
A quick view

1How to join the society:

The San Joaquin Geological Society has no formal dues, and our activities are open to anyone interested in geology.

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Current Abstract


Dinner on June 10, 2014









Recent Work at The Geysers and Calistoga Geothermal Fields


Joseph Austin

The California Department of Conservation, Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources is the leader in regulating the State’s 962 geothermal production wells, and 278 geothermal injection wells.  In 2012, California produced 12,733 Gigawatt hours or 6.4% of the in-state electrical generation from geothermal resources.  California also uses geothermal resources for agriculture, aquaculture, district and domestic heating, and balneology.

The Geysers is the largest geothermal field in the world.  It is located in the Mayacamas Mountains in the borderland of Sonoma and Lake Counties in northern California.  Its unique geological conditions have provided a great resource.  A broad overview is presented, including some maps and cross-sections.  Reservoir conditions and the EPA Class V injection project are discussed.  Some examples of the challenges associated with landslides are shown.

The GeoSteam database and the Well Finder mapping system are internet-based methods by which the public can gain access to geothermal well data for the State of California.  Well location data are presented by Well Finder in geo-referenced association with digital orthophoto quadrangle images.  By clicking on an individual well symbol, a user can view well logs, well history, and production/injection data.  A brief tutorial for using the databases is presented, with a focus on updates from the Calistoga Geothermal field.  Recently, sub-meter accuracy GPS surveys were performed, and a cache of old temperature logs were posted for the Calistoga field.

Joseph A. Austin is a native of Palo Alto, has a BS degree in Geoscience from Christian Heritage College (1977), and California registration as a geophysicist.  Joe has worked for the Atlantic Richfield Company, Anania Geologic Engineering, and as a consultant for Shell Western E&P, and Tri-Valley Oil and Gas Co.  Joe has been employed with the California Department of Conservation, Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) for 22 years.  In 2010, after a total of 29 years of living in Bakersfield, Joe was appointed to be the District Geothermal Engineer in DOGGR’s office in Santa Rosa.

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3The San Joaquin Geological Society gladly accepts your donations. In 2011, the Society awarded nearly $8000 to educational institutions and organizations.

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