CSU, Noble get $1.4 million grant for oil and gas water management [Greeley Tribune, Colo.]Greeley Tribune, Colo.McClatchy-Tribune Information Services
Nov. 07--Colorado State University and Noble Energy will work together with a $1.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop ways to treat and recycle water used in oil and gas drilling in Weld County.
Ken Carlson, a civil engineering professor at CSU, will work for the next two years with the company to develop computer modeling and online training materials in partnership with the industry. The project has the potential to reduce truck traffic, air emissions and water usage.
"This is driven by efficiency and if the industry's more efficient with water use, there's less risk of environmental impact," Carlson said in a news release. "Another benefit of recycling is a reduction of stress on agriculture water and a reduced risk of regional water depletion. Optimizing management of water during drilling and hydraulic fracturing could mitigate other environmental impacts, including ecological degradation due to excessive truck traffic and the associated dust and land disturbance."
The grant was awarded through DOE's Research Partnership for Sustainable Energy in America program, aimed at improving water management, including acquisition, transportation and disposal, according to the release.
The study will develop industry targeted geographic information system (GIS) based tools that can be used to assess the logistics of water use, transportation, reuse and disposal, Carlson said in the release.
"As we continue to increase activity in the (Denver-Julesburg) Basin, we seek solutions to maximize efficiencies while minimizing impacts," said Ted Brown, Noble's northern region senior vice president in the release. "Our ongoing partnership with CSU is key in achieving this goal, and living up to that corporate purpose."
Carlson said the project will be a vehicle by which he and the college can communicate, as an objective third party, the complexities of the energy industry to the community.
"We hope this collaboration will provide a unique opportunity to protect Colorado's water resources while also enabling economic growth from the boom in oil and gas development in the region," he said in the release.
Carlson is the co-director of the Colorado Energy Water Consortium, a partnership in northern Colorado that includes government, industry, environmental groups, agricultural interests and CSU leaders working together to solve water issues associated with oil and gas.
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