Crude oil isn’t the only petrochemical that needs special handling and secondary containment. Many of the byproducts created during oil refinement, including produced water and fracking fluids, are just as difficult or more challenging to handle than oil. Drilling produces large volumes of byproducts that need extensive processing before the liquids are safe to return to the environment. Even if you simply plan to pump these fluids to the bottom of a finished well at the end of the operation, you’ll need temporary holding ponds that won’t create environmental hazards in the meantime.
Similar Spill Risks
Most of the byproducts of oil production pose similar or the same environmental risks as pure crude oil. While some diluted liquids may have a slightly reduced effect, the EPA and other agencies often pose the same penalties and fees as they would for any other hazardous spill. Don’t assume that wastewater products are any less expensive to remediate either. Some of the compounds found in produced water can linger for years in soil or groundwater supplies, leading to expensive remediation that takes long periods of time to work.
Value of Reuse
Produced water can be nearly as valuable as oil when handled and stored carefully. It’s rich with hydrocarbons that can be reused as fuel sources and for further extraction of oil and natural gas. Allowing produced water to escape, or lose value by evaporation, is simply a waste for most oil and gas companies. Containment not only prevents environmental damage and costly resulting fines, but it also allows you to create new income or reduce existing costs by reusing byproducts.
Open Storage Ponds
Oil and mining byproducts are often stored in open storage ponds. This can work well when evaporation is desired to remove wastewater or solidify mud sludge, but it’s undesirable when dealing with other byproducts that need to remain liquid. Covering open storage ponds is the best way to control evaporation, prevent unauthorized animal and human access, and control any potential fumes or blow off. A cover with proper drainage also keeps rainwater from diluting the stored byproducts or produced water. If you need covers for oil containment and protection, we have just what you need here at BTL Liners.
Frac Pits and Freshwater Ponds
While containment and covers are often considered first for the frac pits holding wastewater and flow back, the freshwater required for hydraulic fracturing also needs proper containment. It’s all too easy for these ponds and tanks to flood during heavy rainfall events. If the flooding is bad enough, the entire tank or pond could wash out and cause a serious delay in operations. Protecting both frac pits and freshwater ponds with proper containment and cover will ensure that all liquids, whether they’re byproducts or fresh supplies, stay where they’re needed the most.
From frac pits to wastewater holding tanks, any storage of oil drilling and refining byproducts needs proper secondary containment. Reinforce any dikes and berms you add to contain spills from these storage containers with a flexible layer of RPE from BTL Liners.