Companies partner to provide solutions for produced water disposal, reuse

March 23, 2021
The power-water solution addresses the need for more economical and environmentally sustainable field operations.

Heartland Water Technology Inc., and Power-On-Demand (POD) recently announced a partnership focused on delivering combined power-water solutions to the energy industry that generate cleaner on-site power with reduced greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions, while providing cost-effective, reliable solutions for produced water disposal and reuse.

The power-water solution addresses the need for more economical and environmentally sustainable field operations. Oilfield operators have long recognized the many benefits of electrification of their field operations. Onsite micro-grids use clean-burning natural gas, as well as flare gas, which is otherwise being wasted, to lower cost, lower emissions and provide reliable power for electrically driven equipment. Hybrid micro-grids that include battery/energy storage increase the hours of available power and are becoming the standard.

Operators continue to face challenges with flowback and produced water management. They seek cost-effective alternatives that can reduce the reliance on saltwater disposal wells. The costs of water treatment and disposal for producers in an environment of lean margins demands that water management cost and environmental focus are among the highest concerns.

Power-on-demand provides a cogeneration solution for oilfield operators that combines a gas turbine with Heartland's proven Produced Water Concentrator, which uses the turbine exhaust for thermal evaporation of produced water. Heartland calls this solution CoVAP™, or Cogeneration for Wastewater Evaporation. This mobile/modular solution can be quickly deployed, meet the power needs of a frack field, and reduce the volume of produced water to be managed through evaporation.

Pat Bond, president and COO of POD, said, "Acting together, Heartland and POD can solve multiple problems for operators with one simple proven solution: operators save cost and increase reliability through electrification, and they treat, reuse and dispose of produced water on-site using heat exhaust from those electrification engines."

The benefits of a combined Power-Water solution are significant. Economics are improved for both power generation and water treatment. Cheap or free thermal energy, low-cost power, reliable electrical equipment, and on-site disposal all drive a compelling economic value proposition. However, just as important as economic benefits are the sustainability improvements that can be achieved. Conversion from inefficient diesel or field gas motors to electrically driven systems reduces GHG emissions. Beneficial use of otherwise wasted flare gas or engine exhaust for evaporation improves system efficiency and reduces emissions. On-site produced water volume reduction and re-use takes trucks off the road, a major ESG and HSG (Health, Safety, Environment) initiative for the industry.

Heartland's CEO Earl Jones, said, "As the industry moves to electrically-driven equipment for field operations, cogeneration is a clear, logical extension. Using turbine exhaust beneficially for produced water evaporation improves energy efficiency, reduces produced water volumes, takes trucks off the road, and ultimately, reduces costs. Solutions that are better for the environment that also reduce cost … that's impact."

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