The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ended a suit between producers and Kingfisher County over transporting produced water in the STACK play, siding with producers…
The Oklahoma Supreme Court has ended a suit between producers and Kingfisher County over transporting produced water in the STACK play, siding with producers. The transportation lines in question are moving produced water to a centralized treatment facility, where water is recycled for further use in fracking operations.
The Board of County Commissioners issues permits to producers in Kingfisher County for temporary water lines. In the suit, they contended that their permits are only for freshwater. The Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association & Oklahoma Oil and Gas Association (OIPA-OKOGA) argued that based on an Oklahoma Senate bill from 2015, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission had sole authority to regulate oil and gas operations. The court agreed that the transportation of produced water fell within the jurisdiction of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission.
Cody Bannister, Vice President of Communications at OIPA-OKOGA, told Water in Oil that temporary lines kept an estimated 40,000 trucks off the road over a 3-month period. While no additional figures were available, it seems that between 50,000 and 60,000 bbl per day are being transported in Kingfisher County through lay flat hose.
The county commissioners have authorized a representative to request the supreme court reconsider its position. In reaction, OIPA-OKOGA President Chad Warmington released a statement saying that they, “are extremely disappointed that the Kingfisher County commissioners have chosen to ignore the very clear guidance from the state Supreme Court while also ignoring our multiple offers to work together.”
While Kingfisher County is the only county in OK that has tried limiting the oil and gas industry’s ability to move produced water, Bannister said that some municipalities and institutions are trying to limit drilling permits within their boundaries, which could in turn affect the transportation of water.