Environmental Safety Assessment of Drilling Operations in the Marcellus-Shale Gas Development
- Richard Olawoyin (Pennsylvania State University) | John Y. Wang (Pennsylvania State University) | Samuel A. Oyewole (Pennsylvania State University)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Drilling & Completion
- Publication Date
- June 2012
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 212 - 220
- 2012. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 6.5.5 Oil and Chemical Spills, 7.2.1 Risk, Uncertainty and Risk Assessment, 1.6 Drilling Operations, 5.8.2 Shale Gas
- 1 in the last 30 days
- 806 since 2007
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The process of gas development is intensive and involves risk to theenvironment. Statistics confirm that 0.5 to 1% of wells drilled result in ablowout. Causes of these exploration risks are identified as violations ofenvironmental laws enforced by the Pennsylvania Department of EnvironmentalProtections (DEP), operational pollution (accidental spills and leaks), andoperator's policy. In addressing this concern, a risk-assessment methodologywas used to evaluate all violations by operators in the State of Pennsylvaniafrom January 2008 to November 2010, by use of Statistical Analysis Software(SAS). The most significant causes of environmental damage and risk weredetermined by use of the doubly repeated measure analysis of covariance(ANCOVA). The category effect and interaction effect were used to prove theusefulness of the developed model, which helps explain the safety level of thelocality. There were a total of 2,601 violations between 2008 and 2010committed by 65 different operators in the Marcellus Shale, out of which only27 of the operators showed significance difference based on environmentallydamaging violations (ranked 5 to 10). A statistical comparison was made tounderstand the difference between the operators based on the 2,601 totalviolations. The most significant incidents are ranked [on the basis of Bordacount (Saari 1985)] 3, 5, 9, 10, which accounts for 67% of all the violations.These data reflect several environmental concerns that are currently prevalentin the Marcellus-shale area. This research identifies environmental incidents,causes and effects of exploration risk, and safety impediments in the Marcellusgas play. It also presents guidelines for feasible options to minimizeenvironmental risks and consequently increase the degree of safety in the area.Recommendations on how to mitigate these impending problems are presented.
|File Size||785 KB||Number of Pages||9|
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