Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Ben Franklin Center Releases Study Of Drilling Wastewater Treatment & Disposal

The Ben Franklin Shale Gas Innovation & Commercialization Center Wednesday released an update of its 2012 report on shale gas drilling wastewater treatment and disposal covering 2014 which resulted in a finding the industry is recycling 91 percent of its wastewater as a result of the adoption of 25 PA Code 95.10 regulations five years ago, 1.1 percent is discharged to surface water and 7.9 percent is being disposed by underground injection wells.
In 2014, about 1.8 billion gallons, 42,919,000 barrels, of wastewater was produced. That is about the same amount as was produced in 2011. Most of this was “produced” water, the water that comes from wells after they are put into production. In 2011 the greater fraction was “frac” water.
The report said much of the credit for recycling goes to the members of the Water Resources Advisory Committee and the Department of Environmental Protection Bureau of Water Standards staff who in 2009 worked diligently with the industry to craft the regulations that have been so successful in promoting reuse.
SGICC hired Wunz Associates, LLC to undertake the study as a follow up to their 2012 effort. The most significant finding in the report is that volumes classified as "produced water" exceeded those classified as "frac fluid" in 2014.
Bill Hall, SGICC Director notes, “This has occurred largely due to the slowdown in drilling and fracturing of wells by the industry and could reverse again in the future when natural gas and NGL prices rebound and drilling picks up again. Additionally, the amount of produced water is likely to decline over time since it is generated in proportion to the amount of gas or NGLs a well is producing, and that tends to drop off fairly rapidly after the initial years of production.”
Hall also stressed that the majority of the wastewater generated as both “produced” and “frac fluid” are recycled by the industry. In fact, the PADEP records indicate that more than 91 percent of the water is recycled by being used in a future completions project. Recycling is typically done after the water is partially treated to remove solids and other unneeded constituents.
“There may be a point in the future where total frac flowback fluid and produced water volumes do exceed the total volume of water used to fracture wells in the state. But that point has not been reached yet,” noted Hall. “The industry continues to look for innovations in the area of shale wastewater treatment and disposal to address future challenges.”
A copy of the report is available online.

No comments :

Post a Comment

Subscribe To Receive Updates:

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner