Water and EOR Operations


Published on

Presentation for 2013 EORI CO2 Conference in Casper, WY July 9, 2013.
Carly Sowecke, Geolgist for Trihydro, specializes in suppor for the oil and gas industry, including developing water monitoring plans, environmental due diligence for mergers and acquisitions, and assisting clients with water recycling systems.

Speaker notes included on "Notes" tab below.

Published in: Education, Technology, Business
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide
  • IntroductionHot topic with landowners/environmental groupsWater is a force that in many cases drives oil and gas production—especially petroleum recovery with CO2 injections/enhanced recovery. And is currently a hot topic with environmental groups and landowners
  • Acquisition—not as big of an issue with EOR producers, and usually since these fields have been previously developed, there are existing systems already in place for acquiring water. Some of these systems include:Water acquisition can come in many forms:Drill well for industrial useBuy water from municipality or large yielding well from landownerPermit for surface water use—nearby lakes, ponds, rivers, municipal suppliesTransportation:Trucking from sourcePiping from nearby water wellPumping into holding ponds Usage depends on:FormationGeographical areaType of wellType of play
  • Management and Disposal—probably largest issue, too much water and have disposal issues.The field is often under water flood or secondary recovery before EOR operators come in. Especially if the depleted reservoir needs to be re-pressurized by waterflooding, or water alternating gas (WAG) floods. These methods present water quantity and in some cases quality problems.Disposal options vary widely and I’ve seen producers use a combination of these disposal solutions to deal with their excess water:Injection wellsTrucking to disposal facilities that accept produced/flow back waterClosed loop systems use less water and recycle water to be used againRecycling systems for discharge—lots of producers use, but technology still developingMicrobes can be a problem: souring, corrosion, scaling, clogging, etc.Evaporation ponds—permitting and impacts can be an issue, wildlife interferenceBiggest hurdle is managing the water responsibly and in a timely mannerAlso see impacts to water quality include formation of carbonic acid and downhole impacts to aquifers.Really, there is no silver bullet and I’ve seen operators use multiple different methods to manage and dispose of their water
  • Water Sampling/Due DiligenceAgain, these fields have been previously developed as traditional production fields, though in my experience I’ve seen producers take the proactive approach and it has been beneficial to them in the long run.Sampling prior to drillingMany times called “baseline water quality sampling”, though not quite baselineStill important to establish an “operator” baseline, just to have a record of what was there prior to X operator started drilling. The sampling is a way to mark what was or was not in the field prior to the operator starting their activities. So, it really is a baseline for the operator’s development.It’s a great liability tool to use prior to development, invaluable to have a report of water quality and where it was prior to X company coming in and starting work.I my experience, I’ve seen the pre-sampling establish a positive rapport with landowners and gives them a chance to connect with operator and ask questionsDeveloped vs. undeveloped fieldsDepends on what field and field spacing, but still valuable to establish baseline for the operatorCan tailor analyte suite to specific target formation or field specific qualities—i.e. uranium/shale, NORM
  • Looking Ahead: new and emerging water sampling rules and regulations. Many states have rules/regulations or room in their statutory language to require sampling. A few states don’t have an actual rule, but they still have statutory authority to be aware of. I’ve just listed the major oil and gas producing states (this list is as of 7/9/2013):Here is a list of some states that either have a rule or are currently developing one: Colorado, Ohio, Wyoming, North Carolina, New York, N. DakotaThese states have vague or statutory authority to require sampling if they deem it necessary: Pennsylvania, W. Virginia, Alaska, California, AlabamaAnd some states at this point do not have a rule or regulation: Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, LouisianaIn a few of the rules, the sampling is attached to APD and need to submit a drilling plan that includes what water wells will be sampled, where wells are in relation to the pad, etc.Rules aren’t necessarily complicated, but there is usually a large amount of data to deal with and process and can be easier to handle out of house—unless you have someone dedicated in-house.
  • A Brief Case Study:Colorado Rule Outline:Up to 4 water wells within a ½ mile radius of surface location (pad)Sample 12 months prior to setting the conductor, then 6-12 and 60-72 months after completion of well or the last well drilled on the padAverage analytical cost = $300, this is not including the isotopic analysis on methane if methane found >2mg/L in well.Various scenarios will trigger Commission involvement: methane difference of 5 mg/L between sampling periods, methane greater than 10 mg/L, if BTEX or TPH compounds detected in any sample, etc.Case study specifics: Operator found thermogenic gas in well prior to drillingPerformed confirmation sampling eventCOGCC investigating further—the rule is open to let the COGCC act as they deem necessaryBig point is that they sampled prior to drilling and have record of that water quality
  • ConclusionsWater disposal and management continues to be the largest hurdle when developing and producing a field through EORMany new rules and regulations are starting to be established in my states. Keep an eye out for new emerging rules and regulations
  • Water and EOR Operations

    1. 1. Water and EOR Operations Carly Sowecke Geologist July 9, 2013
    2. 2. Water and Industry  Introduction  Overview of issues/possible solutions  Hot topic  Schedule  Acquisition  Management/Disposal  Water Sampling and Due Diligence  Looking Ahead: New Rules and Regulations  Case Study  Conclusions
    3. 3. Water Acquisition
    4. 4. Water Management and Disposal
    5. 5. Water Sampling and Due Diligence
    6. 6. Looking Ahead: New Water Sampling Rules and Regulations
    7. 7. Water Sampling and Due Diligence: A Case Study
    8. 8. Conclusions
    9. 9. Questions? Contact Information: Carly Sowecke csowecke@trihydro.com 307/745-7474