Produced Water Recovery-an Asset or a Liability?

by | Apr 25, 2014 | Plumbing

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Oil extraction is an expensive process. The process requires large amounts of water and also generates huge quantities of water known as produced water, as a by-product. However, this water contains harmful substances which have negative effects to the environment as well as human life and thus it is not fit for human consumption or agricultural production. Oil mining companies can substantially minimize oil production costs while saving the environment by simply employing produced water recovery techniques in the process.

Both national and international bodies have put in place tight rules regarding the disposal of industrial waste like produced water in their campaign to attain a sustainable environment. Thus, all oil production plants must employ proper means of disposing this waste water.

As the oil reservoir gets old and depleted, more water needs to be injected and thus more produced water is generated. Thus, a company should carefully choose that technique which is cost effective and more reliable in order to be effective.

In most cases, produced water management is a costly operation for many oil extraction plants. As the economy becomes tighter, oil production companies are striving hard to cut production costs by employing the latest technology in recovering produced water. With the advanced technology, produced water can be purified, treated, handled, contained, re-used or even disposed of safely. This not only cuts production cost but also ensures a safe environment for bio-existence.

There are many types of water recovery methods that can be used to treat produced water. However, the level of treatment must be considered for each method applied. Sometimes, more than one method may be employed in meeting the required produced water recovery standards.

Water is one of the scarce resources which need to be maximally utilized in order to gain a competitive advantage in the stiff economy. Most of oil fields are located in dry areas where water is hardly enough. Produced water recovery can be used safely for crop irrigation in dry seasons or in dry areas, for watering livestock, stream flow augmentation and in other industrial uses. Recovered produced water can also be stored in aquifers for future use in attaining a self-sustaining process.

The appropriate use of the recovered water is greatly determined by the geographical location of the recovered water generation, the location of the beneficial use e.g. irrigation field and most importantly, the constituent concentrations in the recovered water.

Produced water can be an asset or a liability to the gas or oil extraction company. If well managed as a valuable resource rather than as a waste product for disposal, it can be a great asset. If not, it becomes a recurring liability.

Learn more about produced water recovery techniques, utilization of produced water, effects of produced water on human health and the environment in general and other related information by visiting us website.

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