Wastewater and Shale Formation Development : Risks, Mitigation, and Regulation book cover
1st Edition

Wastewater and Shale Formation Development
Risks, Mitigation, and Regulation

Edited By

Sheila Olmstead

ISBN 9781774635667
Published March 31, 2021 by Apple Academic Press
294 Pages 47 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

This title includes a number of Open Access chapters.

The number of tight oil and shale gas wells continues to rise primarily in the US, but also worldwide. The US has vast reserves of oil and natural gas, which now are commercially reachable as a result of advances in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies. But as hydraulic fracturing is increasingly used, concerns have been raised about potential stress on surface water and groundwater supplies from the withdrawal of water used in the process. Equally important is the growing volume of wastewater generated from hydraulically fractured oil and gas wells, requiring recycling, treatment, and disposal.

Wastewater and Shale Formation Development: Risks, Mitigation, and Regulation examines four major issues, taking a scientific look from different perspectives at water use in shale gas development, potential environmental effects of wastewater from fracking, how to mitigate potential risks associated with wastewater from shale development, and regulatory approaches to the wastewater management problem

With chapters from researchers in the field, this compendium volume sheds light on the important issues and challenges surrounding natural gas extraction using hydraulic fracturing and may be of interest to researchers and public policymakers alike.

Table of Contents


Part I: Water Use and Wastewater Production in Shale Gas Development

Source and Fate of Hydraulic Fracturing Water in the Barnett Shale: A Historical Perspective

Jean-Philippe Nicot, Bridget R. Scanlon, Robert C. Reedy, and Ruth A. Costley

The Fate of Injected Water in Shale Formations

Hongtao Jia, John McLennan, and Milind Deo

Spatial and Temporal Correlation of Water Quality Parameters of Produced Waters from Devonian-Age Shale following Hydraulic Fracturing

Elise Barbot, Natasa S. Vidic, Kelvin B. Gregory, and Radisav D. Vidic

Part 2: Potential Environmental Effects of Fracking Wastewater

Shale Gas Development Impacts on Surface Water Quality in Pennsylvania

Sheila M. Olmstead, Lucija A. Muehlenbachs, Jhih-Shyang Shih, Ziyan Chu, and Alan J. Krupnick

Geochemical and Isotopic Variations in Shallow Groundwater in Areas of the Fayetteville Shale Development, North-Central Arkansas

Nathaniel R. Warner, Timothy M. Kresse, Phillip D. Hays, Adrian Down, Jonathan D. Karr, Robert B. Jackson, and Avner Vengosh

Radionuclides in Fracking Wastewater: Managing a Toxic Blend

Valerie J. Brown

Part 3: The Quest for Mitigation

Optimal Well Design for Enhanced Stimulation Fluids Recovery and Flowback Treatment in the Marcellus Shale Gas Development using Integrated Technologies

Richard Olawoyin, Christian Madu and Khaled Enab

Co-Precipitation of Radium with Barium and Strontium Sulfate and Its Impact on the Fate of Radium during Treatment of Produced Water from Unconventional Gas Extraction

Tieyuan Zhang, Kelvin Gregory, Richard W. Hammack, and Radisav D. Vidic

Part 4: Fracking Wastewater Regulations

Regulation of Water Pollution from Hydraulic Fracturing in Horizontally-Drilled Wells in the Marcellus Shale Region, USA

Heather Hatzenbuhler and Terence J. Centner

Reflecting Risk: Chemical Disclosure and Hydraulic Fracturing

Sara Gosman

Hydraulic Fracturing: Paving the Way for a Sustainable Future?

Jiangang Chen, Mohammed H. Al-Wadei, Rebekah C. M. Kennedy, and Paul D. Terry


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Sheila Olmstead, PhD, joined the LBJ School as an associate professor of public affairs in 2013. Before joining the LBJ School, Olmstead was a Fellow (2010-2013) and Senior Fellow (2013) at Resources for the Future in Washington, DC, as well as an assistant professor of environmental economics at the Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies (2002–2007) and an associate professor (2007–2010), where she was the recipient of three teaching awards. Dr. Olmstead is an environmental economist whose current research projects examine the environmental externalities associated with shale gas development in the United States, regulatory avoidance under the U.S. Safe Drinking Water Act, the influence of federal fire suppression policy on land development in the American West, and free-riding in dam placement and water withdrawals in transboundary river basins. She has worked extensively on the economics of water resource management, focusing on water demand estimation, water conservation policy, and access to drinking water services among low-income communities. Climate and energy policy are additional topics of her research, especially with regard to the application of market-based environmental policy instruments.