Dangers Of OIl Drilling

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Dangers Of OIl Drilling Powered By Docstoc
					Christopher Grobbel, PhD
PO Box58
Lake Leelanau, Michigan 49653
Michigan basin
Oil & Gas History in Michigan
 52,000 oil and gas wells have been drilled in Michigan
 since 1925.
 Today 28,000 wells in place in the state (15,000 oil and
 13,000 natural gas wells).
 9,900 wells in the Antrim shale (600 to 2,200 feet
 deep), late Devonian (365 million years ago.)
 According the DEEQ, Michigan is ranked 12th
 nationally in natural gas production.
 20% of gas consumed in Michigan is produced in
Oil & Gas History – Michigan Plays
 1930s – 1940s Michigan Stray & others
 1970s – early 1980s Niagaran Trend (Manistee to
 Rogers City) - natural gas storage today
 Mid-1980s Prairie du Chien (central lower Michigan)
 Late 1980s – 1990s Antrim shale (northern lower
 2010 - 2012 Collingwood/Utica shales
   Policy: energy independence, global warming,
   economic downturn, bridge fuel to low carbon economy,
13th largest
source of natural
gas in the U.S.

natural gas
boom late 1980s
thru 1990s.
Environmental Record
 In 1995 the MDEQ, OGM stopped keeping a list of oil
 and gas contamination sites (known as the “SAPP”

 No comprehensive list publically available today.

 Info today only gleaned from individual FOIA requests
 and study.
Environmental Record
 In 2001, 187 of 2,842 or 6.6%known sites of environmental
 contamination site due to oil and gas extraction or drilling
 (Alliance for the Great Lakes study).
   25% contaminated drinking water (61% had not investigated
   groundwater contamination)
   21% no action
   2% cleaned up
   0% with groundwater contamination fully remediated (some
   known to MDEQ up to 35 years)

 In 2007 reported that the MDEQ, Office of OGM maintains
 an internal list of ~700 O&G contamination sites known
 since 1986.
Environmental Record
 2008 study indicated 5,938 active oil and gas development
 sites in Otsego County (Lake Louise Christian Community
 - Methodist Camp, 2,800 acres).

 Review of last published MDEQ list of environmental
 contamination sites including oil and gas sites, revealed
 44% were result of releases oil and gas sites in 1996.

 2009 review of Part 201 list of sites of environmental
 contamination in Otsego County revealed 30% at oil and
 gas sites.

 Especially at collection sites, dehydration /processing
 facilities, pipelines, truck spills, on and off loading
 accidents…not the well head.
MDEQ Record
 Record of inadequate clean ups…reliance on visual and
 olfactory evidence vs. discrete soil/groundwater
 Environmental expert “(OOGM) implements its own
 substandard approach based on Part 615 under the
 guise of an intra-division Memorandum of
 “all efforts to resolve this with the MDEQ have failed to
 address this internal disparity between the OOGM
 and Remediation Division.”
Example: Hayes 22 Central
Production facility, Gaylord
 Separates oil, gas and brine from the Niagaran

 Nearly 60 releases of crude oil, brine and condensate
 since July 30, 1985.

 Groundwater contamination plume 3,500 ft long, 1,000
 ft wide, 30 feet thick (200 feet below ground surface)
 or 10.5 million cubic feet.
Table 1: Representative Antrim Gas Brine Contaminant Concentrations, Otsego County.17 Water
Quality Parameters           Niagaran Brine      Drinking Water Standard        Description

pH       6.21        6.5 to 8.5* Low pH water may cause corrosion of metal plumbing resulting in poor
tasting water and high levels of copper and/or lead from plumbing components.
Total Diss. Solids (mg/L)         189,810     Less than 500*           Measures all of the dissolved materials
in water. High total dissolved solids causes poor-tasting water.
Chloride (mg/L)      117,500      Less than 250*          Can cause a salty taste to the water along with
corrosion and blackening of metals.
Arsenic (mg/L)       0.86         Less than 0.01          May cause cancer and other serious health effects.
Causes no obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Barium (mg/L)        57           Less than 2.0**         May cause hypertension and other serious health
effects. Has no obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Sodium (mg/L)        48,000       Less than 120           High concentrations may be causer hypertension
and problematic for individuals on low sodium diets. No obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Iron (mg/L)          100          Less than 0.30*/less than 2.0**      May cause orange or brown stains and
metallic-tasting water.
Manganese (mg/L) 1.92             Less than 0.05*/less than 0.86**     Causes black stains or flecks along with
a metallic taste. Causes impairment of neurobehavioral function.
Lead (mg/L)          4.77         Less than 0.004**       Causes many serious mental health effects,
especially in children. Causes no obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Lithium (mg/L)       10           Less than 0.17          May cause serious health effects. Causes no
obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Arsenic (mg/L)       2.10         Less than 0.01**        May cause cancer and other serious health effects.
Causes no obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Radium-226 & Radium 228 (pCi/g)               0.95 to 24 pCi/g. Background at 5 pCi/g           10 mrem/yr
exposure*            May cause cancer and other serious health effects. Causes no obvious tastes, odors or
stains in water.
Strontium (mg/L) 250              Less than 4.6           May cause serious health effects. Causes no
obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Selenium (mg/L) 0.33              Less than 0.05          May cause serious health effects. Causes no
obvious tastes, odors or stains in water.
Sulfate (mg/L)       850          Less than 250*          . Causes taste, odor or staining problems in water.
Example Hayes 22, Gaylord
 Impacted 3 private drinking water wells, located 233
 and 298 feet from the facility (chloride, benzene, etc.)

 Clean up stalled despite 35 years of MDEQ oversight,
 3 private lawsuits filed in 2007.

 Computer model projected 20 to 30 years to clean up.
Private Property, Gaylord
 Brine release from pipeline discovered by snowmobiler
 on 2/16/2004 (from Antrim well).
 Oil company reported spill of 42 gallons.
 Soil samples after MDEQ overseen soil cleanup
 showed Chloride in soils at 70 to 1,400 ppm (500 soil
 2/27/2004 MDEQ told company more cleanup
 required, some done but overall definition not
 MDEQ closed file absent adequate investigation.
Private Ranch, Northern Michigan
 39 wells gas wells drilled on parcel since 1989, two
 central production facilities (CPFs ).
 11/5/2000 hunter found leak of underground pipeline,
 brine pool at soil surface.
 Pipeline repaired, some soil removal completed.
 Landowner objected to continued operations due to
 pipeline condition.
 Landowner filed suit, no more production until past
 spills investigated/cleaned up and equipment
Private Ranch, Northern Michigan
 Through litigation 5 other spills since 1997 were
 revealed, did not require reporting to MDEQ or
 investigation or clean up pursuant to Part 615.
 Court ordered a groundwater investigation
 documenting groundwater contamination plume 600
 feet long and 100feet wide, but source soils were
 cleaned up.
 Court determined lack of adequate MDEQ action and
 passage of time resulting in groundwater
Dairy Farm, Gladwin County
 9/11/2003 release of brine and crude oil of an unknown
 quantity reported from “a hole in a flow
 line…overtime” reported to MDEQ.
 Second spill reported on 6/22/2004 to MDEQ from a
 “second leak in the flow line...”
 Periodic and piece-meal soil excavation and free
 product removal from wetland/soils with vacuum
 Soils excavated and placed in on-site bio-treatment
 Full extent of contamination not defined.
 MDEQ signed off that cleanup complete.
Dairy Farm, Gladwin County
 October of 2007 – soil and water sampling by myself
 indicated free phase crude oil, benzene at 61,200 ppb;
 toluene at 87,800 ppb; ethylbenzene at 32,900 ppb;
 xylene isomers at 107,000 ppb; 1,2,4-TMB at 236,700
 ppb; 1,3,5-TMB at 9,020 ppb; Naphthalene at 4,900
 ppb; lithium 14 ppm; chloride at 24,400 ppm in soils
 all dramatically above standards.
 10/07 – benzene at 47 ppb in surface water and
 chloride in groundwater above standards.
 Oil & Gas History in Michigan
Interest now in deeper “shale

“Unconventional” shale gas

US EPA estimates shale gas will
represent 20% of total US
supply by 2020.
Oil & Gas History in Michigan
 Michigan has a rich history of oil and gas drilling. In
 fact, hydraulic fracturing has been used extensively for
 many years in Michigan.

 Hydraulic fracturing is used in virtually every Antrim
 shale well (~9,900 wells, 60 to 220 feet thick)

 According to the MDEQ, there is no indication that
 traditional hydraulic fracturing techniques used in the
 state have ever caused damage to ground water or
 other resources. (Focus is at the well head.)
Michigan Oil and Gas
 MDEQ collects 7% severance tax on oil produced in
 the state.

 MDEQ, Office of Oil, Gas and Mineral (OOGM) is the
 only part of the state’s environmental protection
 agency that is essentially funded by the industry it
Produced 136 billion
cubic feet of gas in

Current average
daily gas production
rate 35 thousand
cubic feet per day
(mcfpd) per well.

Most actively drilled
shale gas play in the

Drilling peaked in
Oil Development in Jackson County
Oil Development in Jackson County
 Starting in 2009 oil found in Jackson and northern
 Lenawee Counties , producing more than 791,000
 barrels of oil in in the first 9 months of 2011…highest
 producing county in the state by nearly two-fold.

 Drilled in the Trenton Limestone -Black River Shale
 Formation (conventional shale bearing oil and gas ).

 More than 60 wells drilled since 2009, almost ½ of
 them in Norvell Township, Irish Hills.
Trenton-Black River Formation
approximately 14,000 to 15,400 feet

AND immediately below the
 Collingwood/Utica unconventional
Deep well injection
 Oil and gas liquid wastes are trucked or piped to deep
 injection wells for disposal.

 Intended to be isolated from and below any geologic
 strata used as a drinking water source.
Deep Well Waste Injection –
Federal Safe Drinking Water Act
 Class I – hazardous liquid wastes, industrial and non-
 industrial liquid wastes, and municipal waste water.
 Class II – brines and other oil and gas production
 Class III – mining fluid wastes.
 Class IV – hazardous and radioactive wastes.
 Class V – general class for non-hazardous shallow
 liquid waste injection.
 Class VI – carbon sequestration wells.
Michigan currently has 7
active hazardous Class I
20 Class I non-hazardous
More than 1,500 Class II
brine licensed deep
injection wells.
Deep Injection Wells –
Environmental Risk
 Factors to consider in locating a deep well injection site
   1) the capacity of the geologic unit or “reservoir” to accept and
   confine the waste (i.e. porosity, permeability lateral extent,
   consistency and thickness of the reservoir);
   2) the structural geology of the setting (i.e. elevation of the
   injection zone in its geologic setting, density variation
   between injectate and naturally occurring brines, presence or
   absence of faults and/or fractures, and the potential for
   injection-induced earthquakes); and
   3) presence or absence of valuable mineral resources within
   the potential area of influence.
Deep Injection Wells –
Environmental Risk
Risks and potential consequences of releases of liquid wastes at
deep injection well sites include:

  The contamination of water supplies through upward or lateral
  migration of waste fluids;

  Induced earthquakes due to increased subsurface pressures from
  deep well injection (a well-known series of more than 1,500
  earthquakes, three over magnitude 5 on the Richter scale are known
  to have occurred from military waste injection at the Rocky
  Mountain Arsenal near Denver between 1962 and 1967, and several in
  northeastern Ohio); and

  Land or subsurface mineral contamination through upward or lateral
  migration of waste fluids.
Deep Injection Wells –
Environmental Risk
 80% of spills at deep well injection sites are the result of
 human error, 20% result from mechanical failure or loss of
 system component integrity.
   E.g. corrosion within pipelines and other system components,
   especially at welds and joints; the plugging well injection
   zone from high concentrations of suspended solids
   (especially > 2 parts per million); system fouling from calcium
   encrustation and/or iron oxidation (i.e. soluble ferrous ions
   precipitating as ferric iron when encountering oxygen); and
   fouling from the induced growth of naturally occurring
   bacteria with waste streams of high concentrations of organic
 Another example includes the injection of industrial
 wastes in Ontario caused by the upward seepage of
 injected wastes in improperly abandoned oil wells near
 Port Huron, Michigan.
Natural Gas Development Trends
 New “push” Silurian/Ordovician-aged
 Collingwood/Utica shales at ~12,000 ft below grade &
 approximately 40 feet thick (465-510 million years

 “Unconventional” shale gas development. In a thin
 shale “reservoir” with microfractures/micropores
   very low porosity and permeability requiring “hydraulic
Natural Gas Chemical Components
Deep Shale/Unconventional Shale
in Michigan
 21 permits used thus far by MDEQ, 5 pending.

 3 wells hydraulically fractured thus far in
 Collingwood/Utica Shale.
  Pioneer Well, Missaukee County
State-Pioneer Well 1-3 drilled by
Alberta-based EnCana Corp, Canada’s
largest natural gas producer.

Produced 2.5 million cubic feet of
gas/day for 30 days.

~$12,500 gas/day or $375,ooo/month.

Fracked with 5,880,000 gallons of
water in 15 stages (140,000 bbls or 980
hauler trucks).
Excelsior Wells, Kalkaska County
  State Excelsior well, starting in December 2011 north
  well producing 3.1
  million ft3/day.

South well
producing 6.5
million ft3/day in
first 7 day sale

EnCana Corp.
Excelsior Wells, Kalkaska County
Excelsior Wells, Kalkaska County
 Gas dehydrated and compressed at well head.

 Piped along gravel county road north to MichCon Wet
 Header pipeline along M-72 Highway.

 Then to Kalkaska processing facility (separate ethane
 and propane) and then to distribution pipeline.

 Wide swath cut in Mackinaw State Forest for pipeline.
Excelsior Wells, Kalkaska County
 Reportedly failed Michigan Water Withdrawal
 Assessment Tool, projecting adverse impacts on
 nearby streams & rivers (natural river section of the
 Upper Manistee River).

 Approved for drilling & production anyway.
The Collingwood Play
Companies spent $178 million on May 4, 2010 for state
leases in 20 Michigan counties.
2009 – 2010 EnCana bought mineral rights to 250,000
acres across Michigan.
Record-setting state lease auction is expected in October
and could encompass 500,000 acres.
Unconventional Shale Gas
 Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing or
 “fracking” are the rule.
Horizontal Drilling
What is hydraulic fracturing?
 According to industry groups & MDEQ, fracking is a proven
 technology used in more than 1 million wells in the U.S.
 since the 1940s to help produce oil and natural gas.

 Involves pumping a water-sand mixture into underground
 rock layers where the oil or gas is trapped.

 Pressure of the fracking fluid creates tiny fissures in the
 reservoir rock.

 Sand holds open the fissures, allowing the oil or gas to
 escape and flow up the well.
Shale Gas Development
 A single well is “fracked” a dozen times or more when
Unconventional Shale Gas
 Now represents 46% of total US natural gas production
 (i.e. tight gas in sandstone, coal bed natural gas and shale

 Top US companies Chesapeake Energy, BP, Anadarko,
 ConocoPhillips, Devon, Range, XTO, EnCana, Chevron,
 EOG, ExxonMobil, etc.

 New shale gas field are located in Texas, Louisiana,
 Arkansas, New York, Pennsylvania and Michigan.

 Other shale gas fields include North & South Dakota,
 Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Oklahoma, Virginia, West
 Virginia, Indiana, Ohio, Maryland, Wyoming.
Fracking Fluid
99.5% water & sand

0.5% additives (equals 400,000 gallons with 8 million gallon frack)
   Acid (hydrochloric, acetic or muriatic)
   Biocide (Glutaraldehyde)
   Breaker (Ammonium persulfate)
   Corrosion inhibitor (Formamide)
   Crosslinker (Borate salts)
   Friction reducer (Petroleum distillates BTEXs, TMBs, Methanol and
   Gel (Guar gum or hydroxyethyl cellulose)
   Iron control (Citric acid)
   Clay stabilizer (Potassium chloride)
   pH adjuster (salts, Sodium or potassium bicarbonate)
   Proppant (Sand)
   Scale inhibitor (Poly- & ethylene glycol mixtures & glycol ethers)
   Surfactant (Isopropanol)
Hydraulic “Fracking”
 596 chemicals known in 900 fracture fluid products
 Proprietary products (Halliburton, Schlumberger, BJ
 Services, etc.
 3 to 8 million gallons of fresh water used per well.
 25 – 33% “flow back” as waste water
 80 – 330 tons of chemicals/well
 Pumped in under very high pressure (“frack gradient”)
 depending on reservoir/formation characteristics
 Water, gases, fracture fluid additives or combination
 creates a ~200 foot “frack zone”
Hydraulic Fracture Fluids
 Proprietary (claimed by industry as a “trade secret”),
 variable from company to company and over time.

   Michigan now requires disclosure of frack fluid
   components; and use of the Michigan Water
   Withdrawal Assessment Tool to screen hydrologic
   impacts (70 gpm or greater after 7/9/09 – register use &
   can’t cause an adverse impact to nearby rives or streams
   or fish communities).

 Petroleum (BTEX), diesel fuel – used by Halliburton &
 BJ Services from 2005-2007 in 15 states
Flow Back
 Captured at well head, stored in ASTs, loaded onto
 trucks, transported & then deep well injected, reused
 or disposed of at publicly-owned treatment works.
Hazardous Substances in Flow-back
 BTEXs, PNAs, Phthalates & chlorinated compounds
 Heavy metals (Al, Sb, As, Ba, B, Cd, Co, Cu, CN, Fe, Pb,
 Li, Mg, Mn, Ni, Se, Ag, Sr, Ti, Tl, etc.)
 Radium 226 (found in New York by state regulators
 1000s x safe drinking water and 267 x aquatic organism
 Methane, ethane
 Brine (chloride, sodium, magnesium, calcium,
 Air emissions (VOCs, CO, CO2, NOx, SO4, CH4, PM)
 Fracking runs 24 hours per day for a few weeks.
 Pioneer well was fracked at 3,200 gallons/minute for
 two weeks.
Traffic Volumes
 ~1,500 truck trips over 3-4 weeks for exploration wells

 Additional 400 – 600 additional truck trips for
 hydraulically fracked wells.
What Can We Do?
 Landowners seek experienced legal assistance before
 signing a lease.

 Baseline environmental study.
What Can We Do?
 Local Units of Government – Michigan Zoning
 Enabling Act
   Zoning authority – arguably applies to surface facilities
   and flow lines….increased traffic? (Sec 3205(2))
   Zoning authority to protect public health, safety and
   general welfare
   Class II injection wells change in use – esp. to Class I
     Mayfield Twp, Grand Traverse County – passed zoning
     regulations making a special land use requiring notification to
     neighbors & township; baseline environmental study;
     environmental monitoring and reporting; compliance with
     SLU standards (setbacks, noise, harmonious in its setting)
What Can We Do?
 Local and/or statewide moratoria and/or bans on
 fracking. Seems unlikely under Michigan law.

   Part 615 preemption clause MCL 125.3205(2) – Michigan
   townships and counties not allowed to regulate gas or oil

 New York cases – Dryden and Middlefield bans on oil
 and gas activities allowed despite similar state law
 preemption language.
MEPA, Part 17
 Suit to prevent pollution, impairment and/or
 destruction of air water and other natural resources.

   E.g. Alba deep injection well case 2010.
     Tort trespass on mineral rights, cumulative environmental
     risk, etc.

 Compel compliance with Water Withdrawal
 Assessment Tool
   Lessons from MCWC vs. Nestle of North America
Litigation to compel cleanups
 E.g. Otsego, Antrim, Charlevoix and Gladwin County
   Compel cleanups to state standards, speed up cleanups,
   homeowner buy-outs if contamination occurs, etc.

 Part 615 vs. Part 201 approaches
 Thank you!
Christopher Grobbel, PhD
P.O . Box 58
Lake Leelanau, Michigan 49653

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Description: Presentation by Chris Grobbel on the dangers of oil drilling. Presented April 5, 2012 in Brooklyn, MI.