A market crash has a way of focusing the mind. The 2014-2015 crash in oil prices, for example, forced unconventional oil and gas producers (Frackers) to improve their water management programs. “The predominant overarching trend in the industry is still dominated by ways to reduce the total spend on water—whether through recycling or sourcing water for lower cost,” said Devesh Mittal, vice president and general manager of Aquatech’s Shale Gas Division. Jeff Gunderson writes at Industrial WaterWorld:
According to Wastewater Treatment Technologies in Natural Gas Hydraulic Fracturing, a report by Navigant Research examining the market for hydraulic fracturing wastewater treatment and recycle systems including deep-well injection, a greater emphasis is emerging on water protection through regulations and public efforts. This trend is expected to influence water sourcing and disposal and will increasingly emphasize treatment and recycling of flowback and produced water over deep-well injection, the report found.
“The market for hydraulic fracturing wastewater treatment is certainly going to grow over the next decade, gradually replacing deep-well injection,” said Anne Wrobetz, research analyst with Navigant Research. “This market will grow primarily in the United States and Canada because of regulatory pressure and because of large shale gas reserves.”
Devesh Mittal, vice president and general manager of Aquatech’s Shale Gas Division, said water management strategies are focused on storage, filtration, metals treatment, and sourcing water across producers. While states are introducing regulations to monitor deep-well injection and to promote recycling of produced and flowback water, the market for water treatment is still slow to bounce back from the downturn. “The number of rigs deployed is constantly rising, but water treatment services demand is picking up slower than rig counts,” he said.
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