Is it possible for oil and gas industries to be eco-friendly? Recently, they have been trying!
Global warming and the rise in climate change have led humanity to become more consciously aware of their impact on the environment. More importantly, the oil and gas industry has shown major interest in adopting greener work policies to boost organizational sustainability and minimize their carbon footprint.
Here is a list of 4 ways that oil and gas industries can become more sustainable and greener:
1. Avoiding Mishaps Involving Methane Gas and Oil Leakage
As we all know, methane gas and oil leakages are extremely harmful to the environment. They are one of the main problems of the oil and gas industries. These industries are very conscious of these problems and do their best to try and solve them because they are the major causes of pollution.
With the help of their oil field equipment and other technologies, they are easily able to reduce methane and oil leakages. They can also reduce oil waste with the help of oil recycling. Oil recycling is basically the process of removing toxins from used oils or oil waste and turning it into diesel fuel.
When compared to actual oil disposals, oil recycling is a lot more commercially feasible. Here are some uses for recycled used oil:
- Industrial burner oil – It is used in industrial burners by demineralizing the used oil
- Mould oil – It is used to let out products from their molds.
- Hydraulic oil is most commonly used by bulldozers, tractors, cranes, etc., to help lift heavy equipment. It can also function as a lubricant and coolant.
2. Prioritizing Water Recycling Throughout the Organization
One major component that oil industries rely on for operations is freshwater. However, that is the one thing we must actively salvage. Processes like hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, are partially responsible for the wastage of freshwater.
Fracking involves the injection of sand, chemicals, and water at high pressure to release gas. This procedure requires a large mass of water that needs to be transported to the drilling location, which is a costly affair.
Luckily, many corporations are being mindful about their water consumption and implementing freshwater recycling policies across the board. For instance, a major corporation, Apache, situated in Texas, is actively using recycled water for its fracking operations.
According to a report by Reuters, Apache is responsible for recycling over 1.2 billion barrels of brackish water. Additionally, they source some of their water supply from the Santa Rosa aquifer – this water can’t be used for agriculture or human consumption, which makes it fitting.
Several other operators have followed Apache’s example and have opted for wastewater to use in their oil and gas operations. Pioneer Natural Resources is obtaining wastewater from Odessa for its drilling and hydraulic fracturing processes.
3. Shifting Towards Renewable Energy
Several oil and gas companies try to invest in different options that allow them to create an eco-friendlier environment and reduce their effects on climate change. One way to do that is by investing in renewable energy. It is one of the most beneficial and highly popular markets today. Renewable energy comes from natural sources such as sunlight, wind, etc.
One of the most common and continuously improving renewable energy source industries is the solar power industry. Solar energy reduces the consumption of fossil fuels and pollution in the oil industry. These solar systems can’t create chemicals that have negative effects on the environment.
Another source of renewable energy is called hydropower energy. It is used to produce electricity and run machines with the help of falling or fast running water. Unlike most power plants that pollute the air by burning fossil fuels, hydropower can’t cause pollution as it is run by water. When comparing other sources of renewable energy, it is quite affordable for the gas and oil industries. It offers stability over time and low-priced electricity.
Furthermore, wind energy is another reliable source of renewable energy. It’s an energy source that continues to grow in the world rapidly. It also doesn’t cause air pollution by releasing toxins in the air or cause acid rains by burning fossil fuels. This is also a very cheap but beneficial investment for the oil and gas industries.
4. Use of Eco-Friendly Oilfield and Equipment
The world has been growing and improving with technology as time goes on. Some of these technologies have been created to provide more benefits to the environment while also increasing efficiency and output.
Many oil and gas industries require a lot of equipment that certifies the safety of the environment. Fortunately, eco-friendly oilfield equipment has been around for the past couple of years, and they have offered all of the aids needed to ensure the environment’s well-being.
It’s also important that you have a gas safety check performed every once in a while. The Gas safety check cost is decided by the gas safety engineer depending on the scope of damages and the amount of equipment used. This can help prevent mishaps from occurring in oil industries and ensure the efficiency of your equipment. Here are a few examples of oilfield equipment:
- Shale Shakers
Shale shakers are used to divide the cuttings (large solids) from the mud (drilling fluids), which is the most important part of the separation system. The drill can be kept cold by using the mud that has been divided. You can also reuse these liquids or fluids over and over again. This process of dividing the cuttings before discarding them is very beneficial in decreasing the price of drilling and the negative effects on the environment.
The role of degassers is to remove harmful gasses that are trapped inside the drilling fluids once they’re divided from the large solids. Gases such as methane, hydrogen sulfide, and carbon dioxide are removed to avoid gas explosions or leakages that can further harm the environment.
There are 2 types of degassers; the first is the vacuum degasser decreases the pressure inside the vessel and separates the gas from the mud. The second is the atmospheric degasser used to let out trapped gases easily with the help of a propeller that spreads out the fluids on a sizeable area.
We know that oil and gas companies are one of the main contributors to climate change, but as time goes on, these industries have grasped their influence on the environment. This has led them to work towards implementing more environment-friendly methodologies and be more conscious about their role. With the help of modern technologies, oil and gas Corp leaders can create a sustainable foundation and move towards a greener future.