Fracking companies begin slow shift to recycling wastewater

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A note from Christi:

My comments on fresh water use within the Texas energy industry: “To me, water is the issue in the state… If we don’t have water, we can’t grow our economy. It doesn’t matter what the industry is.”



MIDLAND — It’s not just oil and natural gas that comes out of the ground here. For every barrel of oil pumped to the surface, more than another barrel of water from deep within the earth comes up alongside it.

With a hue that ranges from gray to black and an odor that resembles gasoline, the water is typically pumped into disposal wells thousands of feet underground. All the while, hydraulic fracturing operations pull billions of gallons of fresh water a year from aquifers that also supply water to cities and farms.

With a years-long drought depleting water supplies across prime drilling areas in South and West Texas, pressure on oil and gas companies has been ramping up. Early indications are the industry is slowly turning toward recycling its own wastewater, along with highly salty and undrinkable brackish water, to curb the strain of the hydraulic fracturing boom.

Read the full article here.