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Tom Kirkman

“The oil and gas industry holds the solution to climate change, as long as it has agriculture as a partner"

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Some unusual ideas to kick around in this article.


Wyoming firm’s method pairs produced water, agriculture customers

As speakers and attendees at the first day of the Produced Water Society Permian Basin’s conference pondered what to do with the millions of gallons of water produced along side oil and gas, one participant was promoting his solution.

With an exhibit booth and as part of a roundtable discussion that closed the first day of the conference at the Horseshoe, Marvin Nash, general manager of Encore Green Environmental, discussed his solution that pairs the oil and gas industry with the agriculture industry. And he announced that it will be put to the test in partnership with Cody Wilson Farms in Midkiff.

While at the conference, the company also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Antelope Water Management in which the two companies will work together to explore opportunities for agriculture interests to reuse produced water.

Telegram that he grew up in the fields of South Texas and was exposed to agriculture, then joined EOG Resources in Wyoming, where he was introduced to produced water.

“To us, it’s not produced water; it’s a byproduct,” he said.

After studying the use of the not-so-dirty water that was a byproduct of Wyoming’s coalbed methane production, he devised the soil science-based proprietary Conservation-By-Design method that cleans the water in proximity to the well and then applies it to the land in the surrounding area to grow grassland and other vegetation. Conservation-By-Design includes software that tracks the water from the wellbore to the land it’s applied to, software that can also tell how many wells are on a section of land and how much oil and water they produce.  ...


...  As part of the partnership with the company, Wilson has proposed adding a solar component. After the water has been processed, Concentrated Solar Power – which, instead of photovoltaics, uses mirrors and lens to concentrate a large area of sunlight onto a small area – will turn the flow of water into steam, which will be used in a turbine to generate electricity. Once used, that steam will then be condensed back into distilled water that can be used in oilfield operations, agriculture and conservation. Not only will revenue be generated from the sale of the water -- primarily for hydraulic fracturing -- but from the sale of electricity. The project will qualify for a 30 percent federal solar tax credit, he said.

“And we haven’t even gotten to the carbon capture aspect,” said Nash, noting that the enriched soil produces greater vegetation, which removes carbon from the air through photosynthesis.  ...


...  “The oil and gas industry holds the solution to climate change, as long as it has agriculture as a partner,” Nash said.

Seth Frentheway, engagement engineer with Encore Green, said, “In our society that’s experiencing a lot of division, a lot of blaming the other guy, Conservation-By-Design lets us create a win-win-win for everyone. I want to be a part of an effort that’s working together to come up with solutions that mean something: Regulators, environmentalists, energy, agriculture. This is an opportunity to come up with real solutions.”

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