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While formation damage is typically a problem affecting the productivity of well, it can also pose problems for injection. Understanding the causes of this type of formation damage is important so that efforts to prevent it can be undertaken. This page discusses the types of formation damage that affect injection wells. In such projects, the cost of piping and pumping the water is determined primarily by reservoir depth and the source of the water. However, water treatment costs can vary substantially, depending on the water quality required.
Steam generation for the purposes of thermal recovery includes facilities to treat the water (produced water or fresh water), generate the steam, and transport it to the injection wells. A steamflood uses high-quality steam injected into an oil reservoir. The quality of steam is defined as the weight percent of steam in the vapor phase to the total weight of steam. The higher the steam quality, the more heat is carried by this steam. High-quality steam provides heat to reduce oil viscosity, which mobilizes and sweeps the crude to the producing wells.
Knowledge of the dissolved constituents is important because these constituents are related to the origin and/or migration of an oil accumulation, as well as to the disintegration or degradation of an accumulation. The concentrations of organic constituents in oilfield brines vary widely. This page discusses the occurrence of dissolved gases, organic constituents, and dissolved solids in produced water. Large quantities of dissolved gases are contained in oilfield brines. Most of these gases are hydrocarbons; however, other gases such as CO2, N2, and H2S often are present.
Water management can significantly add to the cost and environmental footprint of oil production and innovations in water management can provide significant economic and environmental gains. New treatment technologies make recycling of water for hydraulic fracturing possible. Methods for recycling fracking water include anaerobic and aerobic biologic treatment; clarification; filtration; electrocoagulation; blending (directly diluting wastewater with freshwater); and evaporation. Generally, anaerobic treatments on wastewater are implemented on concentrated wastewater. Anaerobic sludge contains a variety of microorganisms that cooperate to convert organic material to biogas via hydrolysis and acidification.
Officials in New Mexico will no longer grant approvals for the use of fresh groundwater sourced from state lands in oil and gas operations. Announced this week by the New Mexico State Land Office, the order will primarily impact unconventional oil and gas producers that require several millions of gallons to drill and later hydraulically fracture each horizontal well. The State Land Office cited water scarcity as the primary driver behind the policy shift. Oil output in New Mexico has soared over the past 5 years, making it the third largest producer in the US. Most of the state's 3 million B/D come from the Delaware Basin, one-half of the prolific Permian Basin that extends eastward into Texas.
Field trials using a new scale-inhibitor technology that improves treatment lifetime of scale squeezes have been successfully performed in the Gulf of Mexico. Tomson Technologies, in partnership with Shell, developed proprietary nanoparticle carriers that enhance scale-inhibitor adsorption to the reservoir and control the return rate for extended periods of time. This technology results in less chemical bleed off in the initial flowback and increases the chemical retained in the reservoir, allowing for more effective squeeze treatments. Both nanoparticle-enabled phosphonate and polymer inhibitors have now been developed and successfully squeezed in the field. Phosphonate inhibitors are widely used for squeeze treatment due to their desirable adsorption and release properties in carbonate and sandstone reservoirs.
Breakwater Energy Partners finished construction of its 80-acre produced-water-recycling facility, the Big Spring Recycling System (BSRS), in the Texas Permian Basin between Howard and Martin counties with a throughput capacity of more than 250,000 B/D of recycled produced water.. The BSRS is the largest produced water recycling facility in the Permian Basin serving commercial operators, according to the company, with frac water blends of up to 100% recycled water and access to disposal capacity of more than 100,000 B/D. The facility integrates hundreds of thousands of barrels of produced water into a central point which provides the option to recycle, store, or dispose of water. It has already recycled nearly 5 million bbl of produced water in Q3 with 1.5 million bbl of commercially permitted treated-water-storage capacity, generating almost 10 million data points within its proprietary cloud-based water balancing and data management system. Commercially viable solutions for handling produced water in the Permian has been a challenge for producers well before the economic downturn of 2020.