Oilfield waste disposal firm Milestone Environmental Services has acquired a package containing three leases and four injection permits in Howard County, TX, within the Permian Basin.
The acquisition provides the Houston operator with an additional 155,000 b/d of permitted injection wastewater capacity, with the ability to interconnect receiving points and injection wells as a single, integrated, production waste management network in the northern Midland sub-basin.
“Water disposal infrastructure is a valuable and natural complement to our existing business, which builds on our deep injection experience, superior operating record, and blue chip customer base,” said CEO Gabriel Rio.
The firm also has broken ground on a slurry injection facility near Big Spring in the Midland sub-basin, to serve West Texas operators. The facility, scheduled to open by the end of the year, plans to accept drilling, completion and production waste streams, including oil-based and water-based muds, drilling fluids, flowback, tank bottoms, dirty water, and produced water.
Like Milestone’s seven slurry injection facilities now in operation, the Big Spring location would provide full-service washouts for trucks and fracture tanks. Other Milestone facilities are in the Eagle Ford and Haynesville shales.
Big Spring is the third facility announced by Milestone this year. In March, the company received permitting for a Reeves County landfill in Orla, which began construction in May. The Railroad Commission of Texas in April also awarded Milestone its second landfill permit in April for a site about 30 miles south of Midland in Upton County.
“The Permian Basin continues to out-produce the rest of the United States in drilling and oil and gas production,” Rio said. “The increasing volume of activity demands efficient and effective resources to support the industry as it progresses. Milestone’s ongoing strategic expansion will support growing customer needs for disposal, as well as our goal to have a facility within an hour of every customer in the region.”
Wood Mackenzie recently estimated Permian water disposal volumes could double by 2022, stressing capacity and requiring additional capital to expand infrastructure.
Many firms are taking notice. TPG Capital in March paid $930 million to take a majority stake in Goodnight Midstream, a produced water infrastructure company that works in the Permian, as well as the Eagle Ford and Bakken shales. NGL Energy Partners LP also recently acquired Mesquite Disposals Unlimited LLC for $890 million, providing an interconnected produced water pipeline system in both New Mexico and in West Texas.
Also in May, Five Point Energy LLC sold a minority stake in WaterBridge Resources LLC to affiliates of GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund. WaterBridge recently acquired PDC Energy Inc.’s water assets in the Delaware sub-basin of the Permian for $125 million.