Friday, January 30, 2009

Recycling Frac Water - Marcellus Shale PA

As you know, Pennsylvania has really cracked down on companies who are drilling in the Marcellus Shale as they do not want to contaminate the environment from the result of bad drilling practices.

One company, Equitable Resources ( EQT ), is starting a project to recycle frac water located in the Marcellus Shale. Equitable hopes to have this project done by the third quarter of 2009.

What is frac water? There are many different way to drill a natural gas shale well. The most common way it to blast a fresh water/sand combination at the shale it self in order to fracture it. Once this process is completed, the water becomes contaminated. It must be pumped back out and stored. To prevent a potential water shortage, Equitable is trying to recycle the water so it can be used over again.

( From Seeking Alpha ) - And then the last question is with the change in the administration and Congress, we are hearing some noise about on the environmental issues, water, and even possible making some noise about regulating fracture stimulation. Any thoughts on that?

Unidentified Company Representative

Well, yes, I’ll save the obvious ones, but what we are going to do, and I mentioned this a few times on the road recently, is we are in the process of building a recycling plant for Marcellus, water handling, we hope it will be up in the third quarter, or maybe a little earlier during this year. We are going to try to recycle that water.

Now that doesn’t address, which is the one concern that some people have that we are hurting the aquifer with salt water from the cracks. I hope adults will finally come to the conclusion that we've been doing that for 70 years now, and haven't damaged any aquifer, but forget about all that, we are trying to recycle as much of that frac water as we possibly can.

And, you know, drill more wells from the same pad so that you can reuse the water. We are going to do pan drilling, it is going to help in the Marcellus, recycling is going to help in the Marcellus, but we are focusing more of our attention on the disposal of the water, rather than the acquisition of the water.

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