PRODUCED WATER


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May 25-26, 2016


Workshop Planning Committee

Co-Chairs:
Steven Hamburg, Environmental Defense Fund
Kris Nygaard, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Co.
Members:
Susan Brantley, Pennsylvania State University
Brian Anderson, West Virginia University
Jan Mares, Resources for the Future
Melissa Batum, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
Bridget Scanlon, University of Texas at Austin
Craig Simmons, Flinders University
Daniel Lind, Department of Interior
Akhil Datta-Gupta, Texas A&M
Joe Lima, Schlumberger Services, Inc.
Elena Melchert, Department of Energy

Brief Summary


Each year, billions of barrels of produced water—the water from underground rock formations and well operations that is brought to the surface during oil and gas extraction—are generated from oil and gas fields across the United States. Produced water typically contains high concentrations of salts and other compounds, and currently the majority of this water is disposed of by injecting it deep underground. However, drawbacks to this management method, including the risk of inducing earthquakes and the expense of transporting produced water to injection sites, as well as increasing needs for alternative water sources to stressed local aquifers in some regions, have driven interest in exploring other options for dealing with produced water. At a May 2016 workshop, representatives of federal and state government, industry, non-governmental organizations, and academia gathered at the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to discuss opportunities and challenges for managing produced water, particularly the reuse of produced water.