Oil field services provider Halliburton Co. last Monday announced that it will publicly disclose fluids used in hydraulic fracturing (fracking) activities, has set up a new Internet site to carry this out, and has introduced a first-of-its-kind ecofriendly fracture fluid system made up of materials sourced entirely from the food industry.
The announcement came less than a week after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) subpoenaed Halliburton, accusing the Houston-based company of failing to comply with a voluntary request to supply "timely and complete information" to help the agency conduct its study on fracking and its impact on drinking water quality (see NGI, Nov. 15).
Halliburton launched its new microsite, which is separate from the company's website, to provide the public with information related to the "identity and common uses of the additives and constituents generally involved in the hydraulic fracturing process -- additives that typically comprise less than one half of 1% of the total water-and-sand-based solution." Halliburton said it will first disclose fluids used in different systems in Pennsylvania, and move on to other states later.
Producers inject fluids at high pressures into underground rock formations to fracture the rock and stimulate production. Producers contend that the fracking process is entirely safe, but environmentalists counter that the additives used in the process pose a risk to the environment and drinking water.
Halliburton said the new food-based fracking solution, which will be marketed under the trade name CleanStim, will be an integral part of its CleanSuite line of products. The formulation would be mixed at the job site with water provided by an operator of a shale gas well, the company said.
"Halliburton pioneered fracturing technology more than 60 years ago, but the safe and efficient use of this technology has never been more important or in greater demand than it is right now," said David Adams, vice president of Halliburton's production enhancement product service line. "With the announcement...of our CleanStim Formulation and the CleanSuite line, we believe we've effectively set a new standard for how unconventional resources may be accessed and produced in the future."
Details about the Halliburton product are available at www.halliburton.com/hydraulicfracturing. The company's microsite offers detailed product information not only for the CleanStim Formulation, but also Halliburton's New Clean Stream Services and Clean Wave System. The Clean Stream Services uses ultraviolet light instead of additives to control bacteria, while the CleanWave System treats wastewater at the well site, allowing it to be reused and recycled by the operators -- significantly reducing the need for fresh water.
Also included on Halliburton's microsite is a list of the company's advancements in the field of 3-D, subsurface fracturing mapping, along with information on how the company's advanced dry polymer blender technology is being used to reduce chemical additive usage even further.
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