Fracking Water’s Dirty Little Secret – Recycling

11. October, 2013 News No comments

With the commercial launch of Halliburton’s trademarked H20 Forward water recycling and reuse process, the difference in how produced water will be handled in 2013 versus 2009 could be more than just a change. As the process becomes more widely used and accepted (it has already been proven in more than 60 wells and 280 fractures), it could create a new approach to the way the oil and gas industry and the entire Williston Basin thinks about water, or as Halliburton believes, a paradigm shift of fluid technology.

The H20 Forward process can recycle produced water in the same reservoirs that hold the hydrocarbons unlocked during the hydraulic fracturing process, and the flowback water that is pumped into the well and then returned during extraction. This allows for unlimited reuse of the produced water in new well completions instead of disposal in deep injection wells.

“When you think about the industry and all the people that are involved, they’ve always said you need good quality water [for fracking] and now we are saying you don’t,” Walter Dale says.

The process will allow for the use of commingled water, and the site preparation for the first recycling facility is already underway east of Watford City, N.D. According to Dale, water managements costs related to hydraulic fracturing are roughly $51 billion annually. “Everybody,” Johnsrud said, at the demonstration event, “will be watching to see how it [the Halliburton-Nuverra process] happens.”

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Iwona Deren

Currently working towards M. Sc. degree in Petroleum Engineering at the AGH University of Science and Technology in Kraków, Poland.

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