To help assure the successful development and implementation of the most appropriate waste management strategy, should be thoroughly considered all variables which may affect the operation. These factors may come from any number of areas, including but not limited to operations, logistics, regulatory policies, internal company strategy or equipment availability. As the cost for waste management approaches and surpasses the cost of the actual fluid services, the importance of the development of the proper response to the challenge only increases.

An environmental management strategy should address every portion of the fluid systems. Drilling fluid, completion fluid, production fluid, stimulation fluid and cement slurries can all have different residual effects which must be considered. Coupled with generated solids such as drilled cuttings and produced sands, the task of deciding on the correct disposal option becomes critical. By understanding the factors that effect each individual operation and area and utilizing correct management practices and procedures, a purpose-designed, compliant option should be identified and implemented. This strategy, backed with proper monitoring and documentation, can provide the operator with a sustainable environmentally responsible and compliant solution.

Environmental legislation varies from country to country, and even specific region to region within a country, and the legislation may be subject to frequent changes. Another critical component is the operator's own corporate standards. These can often be more stringent than regulatory limits, which can help prevent future liability for actions taken today. Therefore, proper comprehension of all applicable legislation and the operator's internal standards is critical. The costs, both direct and in-direct, of non-compliance should be considered.

The minimization and control of waste which develops from the strategy can also have the beneficial effect of reducing the number of health-related issues by minimizing or mitigating effluent discharge through air, water and soil releases. The benefits realized through proper handling and disposal of waste materials can have a correlation with reduction of occupational hazards.

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