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News in brief

A roundup of the main developments regarding water in the oil & gas industry for November 29-December 13.

Speaking at a forum on the issue of hydraulic fracturing, Mexican Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources Víctor Manuel Toledo said that legislation is being developed to officially ban hydraulic fracturing in the country. Several other government, academic and industry experts spoke at the event, commenting on the potential negative impacts of the practice, including in water-scarce parts of Coahuila and Tamaulipas states.

Norwegian state oil company Equinor has implemented a new gas flotation technology for oil/gas-water separation at its offshore operations. Stauper Offshore’s compact flotation unit was tested at the first-stage separator tie-in point of the North Sea’s Grane field, resulting in 99.5% oil removal, bringing oil-in-water levels down to 2.52 ppm. Five of Stauper’s units have already been installed on platforms and FPSOs belonging to the China National Offshore Oil Corporation.

Oilfield water intelligence company Sourcewater received the 2019 North American Enabling Technology Leadership Award from consulting and advisory firm Frost & Sullivan for its interactive Oilfield Watermap platform. The company uses satellite imagery to track water flows to and from oilfields as well as disposal and recycling facilities. It combines this data with water quality, pricing and asset information across the Permian Basin and other regions.

After it was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange for failing to trade at more than $1 per share for over 30 consecutive trading days, Basic Energy Services announced a divestment plan targeting $30 million-45 million. The money raised from shedding noncore pumping services assets will go towards funding the 2020-2021 capital budget of its subsidiary Agua Libre Midstream.

Canadian producer Cenovus said it would raise its 2020 capital budget to CAD$1.3 billion-1.5 billion ($990 million-1.14 billion), CAD$ 705 million-820 million of which will go towards its oil sands operations, which focus on steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD). The allowance for oil sands operations is higher than the previous year, and production is expected to grow as a result. Cenovus has two existing SAGD operations – Christina Lake and Foster Creek – and it expects to make final investment decisions on two more next year.

YPF, Argentina’s national oil company, drilled a 12,762-foot frac lateral at its Bandurria Sur field, making it the longest lateral in the country’s Vaca Muerta shale play. The company is now planning a longer lateral at its flagship Loma Campana development. The fracturing operation used much more water than typical jobs in the play, where average laterals extend around 8,200 feet.

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