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Groundwater

Understanding the Potential Impacts of the Extraction of Unconventional Gases on the UK Water Industry - Stage 2

Reference: 14/WR/09/10
ISBN: 1 84057 720 7
Published Date: 28/04/2014

Shale gas and coalbed methane CBM) are trapped at depth in low permeability shale and coal. The extraction of shale gas requires (as may CBM) hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to permit upwards gas migration via a well. Fracking involves injecting lage volumes of fluid under high pressure. Some of this fracking fluid returns to the surface as flowback. During production, wells also generate saline produced water potentially containing radioactive substances. Produced water and flowback require treatment and disposal.
This report represents Stage 2 of a project to understand the potential impacts of fracking and CBM extraction on the UK water industry. It addresses specific concerns regarding: demands on water resources; risks to groundwater and surface water from chemical additives, gas and formation fluids; managamenet and treatment of waste waters; and the potential risks to water company infrastructure from induced seismicity.

Price: £300  

Understanding the Potential Impacts of Shale Gas Fracking on the UK Water Industry - Stage 1

Reference: 13/WR/09/9
ISBN: 1 84057 699 5
Published Date: 21/11/2013

Shale gas is trapped at depth in low permeability rocks. Its extraction requires hydraulic fracturing (fracking) to permit upwards gas migration via a well. Fracking involves injecting large volumes of fluid under high pressure. Following fracking, a proportion of the fracking fluid returns to the surface where it requires treatment and disposal. During production wells also generate saline water that requires disposal.

This report represents Stage 1 of a project to understand the potential impacts of fracking on the UK water industry. Specific industry concerns include: demand on water resources: risks to groundwater from chemical additives, gas and formation fluids: management of waste waters: and the potential for induced seismicity.

The Stage 1 report identifies the location of potential shale reserves in the UK and their relationship to water resources and water company infrastructure. Consideration is given to the likely location, scale and timing of water demand.

Price: £200  

Implications of Changing Groundwater Quality for Water Resources and the UK Water Industry- Phase 3: Financial and Water Resources Impact

Reference: 04/WR/09/8
ISBN: 1-84057-343-0
Published Date: 20/09/2004

This national study shows that groundwater quality problems in the UK have cost the water industry £754  million (at 2003 prices) since 1975. Costs are based on the need for blending, treatment, and source closures. Currently about 2450 Ml/d, almost 50% of the groundwater used for public supply, is affected by groundwater quality concerns. This reflects a combination of deterioration in groundwater quality and more stringent regulatory standards for drinking water. Extrapolation using two alternative scenarios suggests that future capital investment costs could be between £73 million and £180 million for each 5-year AMP period. Further, by 2027, the volume of water treated or replaced may have doubled. If treatment is to be curtailed under the provisions of the Water Framework Directive, capital costs of the order of £2 billion seem likely for alternative sources of water.

Price: £15