Connect with us

Energy

The Next Big Hurdle for Oil and Gas is Water Use

Published

on

In The Rime of the Ancient Mariner from 1834, English poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge famously quipped “Water, water, everywhere / But not a drop to drink”. The lines speak to the irony of sailing the high seas: there’s unfathomable amounts of water in every direction, but it’s definitely not going to quench the thirst of any sailor.

Surprisingly, the situation is not as different on land as you might think.

In some counties in the U.S., especially those with lots of oil and gas activity, there are billions of gallons of waste water, brackish water, or saline water that aren’t potable for human consumption. At the same time, these counties are receiving limited rainfall, and freshwater has become an increasingly scarce and valuable commodity.

Water Innovation is Needed

The fact is, horizontal drilling and fracking operations use large amounts of water. In 2008, an average of just 5,618 barrels of water were used for the injection stage of fracking according to the USGS. In 2014, that ballooned to 128,102 barrels of water for a oil well, and 162,906 barrels for a gas well.

Simultaneously, the Government Accountability Office estimates that 40 of 50 states have at least one region that will face some kind of water shortage by 2023. This crisis has increased social and regulatory pressures on oil and gas firms, while making the supply of usable water less dependable.

Today’s infographic comes to us from Barclays Bank, and it details this situation in depth. Further, Barclays explains how oil and gas companies will need to innovate their way out of the problem to secure new water supply and reduce costs – all while maintaining a social license to operate.

The Next Big Hurdle for Oil and Gas is Water Use

Barclays sees this problem as an opportunity: by re-thinking water use and disposal, and by turning recycled water into a new resource for other industries, oil and gas can decrease costs while giving a boost to their social license to operate.

Click for Comments

Energy

Visualized: Renewable Energy Capacity Through Time (2000–2023)

This streamgraph shows the growth in renewable energy capacity by country and region since 2000.

Published

on

The preview image for a streamgraph showing the change in renewable energy capacity over time by country and region.

Published

on

The following content is sponsored by National Public Utilities Council

Visualized: Renewable Energy Capacity Through Time (2000–2023)

Global renewable energy capacity has grown by 415% since 2000, or at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.4%.

However, many large and wealthy regions, including the United States and Europe, maintain lower average annual renewable capacity growth.

This chart, created in partnership with the National Public Utilities Council, shows how each world region has contributed to the growth in renewable energy capacity since 2000, using the latest data release from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

Renewable Energy Trends in Developed Economies

Between 2000 and 2023, global renewable capacity increased from 0.8 to 3.9 TW. This was led by China, which added 1.4 TW, more than Africa, Europe, and North America combined. Renewable energy here includes solar, wind, hydro (excluding pumped storage), bioenergy, geothermal, and marine energy.

During this period, capacity growth in the U.S. has been slightly faster than what’s been seen in Europe, but much slower than in China. However, U.S. renewable growth is expected to accelerate due to the recent implementation of the Inflation Reduction Act.

Overall, Asia has shown the greatest regional growth, with China being the standout country in the continent.

Region2000–2023 Growth10-Year Growth (2013–2023)1-Year Growth (2022–2023)
Europe313%88%10%
China1,817%304%26%
United States322%126%9%
Canada57%25%2%

It’s worth noting that Canada has fared significantly worse than the rest of the developed world since 2000 when it comes to renewable capacity additions. Between 2000 and 2023, the country’s renewable capacity grew only by 57%.  

Trends in Developing Economies

Africa’s renewable capacity has grown by 184% since 2000 with a CAGR of 4%. 

India is now the most populous country on the planet, and its renewable capacity is also rapidly growing. From 2000–2023, it grew by 604%, or a CAGR of 8%.

It is worth remembering that energy capacity is not always equivalent to power generation. This is especially the case for intermittent sources of energy, such as solar and wind, which depend on natural phenomena.

Despite the widespread growth of renewable energy worldwide, IRENA emphasizes that global renewable generation capacity must triple from its 2023 levels by 2030 to meet the ambitious targets set by the Paris Agreement.

Click for Comments

You may also like

TheCurrency-SubscribeHere

Subscribe

Continue Reading
Visualizing Asia's Water Dilemma

Subscribe

Popular