Oilfield Water Infrastructure Connectivity: The Case for a ‘Hydrovascular’ Network in the Permian Basin

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Citation:  Collins G. 2020. Oilfield Water Infrastructure Connectivity: The Case for a ‘Hydrovascular’ Network in the Permian Basin. Texas Water Journal. Vol. 11. Available from: https://twj.media/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Collins.opt_.pdf 

The current phase of oilfield water infrastructure buildout in the Permian Basin generally emphasizes each operator or midstream provider building its own water transportation and disposal systems. Accordingly, the overall market is balkanized and inefficient compared to the performance a more interconnected system could achieve. A hydrovascular grid in the Permian Basin could lower oil and gas production costs, conserve scarce freshwater by promoting greater recycling and reuse of produced water, help mitigate seismicity risks, and facilitate movement of produced water at large scale for use outside the oilfield. This paper assesses the barriers to such integration. It concludes by offering a set of practical ideas to overcome these barriers and help transform oilfield water into a resource for West Texas and Southeast New Mexico.

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