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Around 750 billion gallons of brine are produced every year by oil and gas production operations

From NETL, produced water is by far the largest volume byproduct or waste stream associated with oil and gas exploration and production. Approximately 15-20 billion bbl (barrels; 1 bbl = 42 U.S. gallons) of produced water are generated each year in the United States from nearly a million wells More than 50 billion bbl of produced water are generated each year at thousands of wells in other countries. Early in the life of an oil well, the oil production is high and water production is low. Over time the oil production decreases and the water production increases. Another way of looking at this is to examine the ratio of water-to-oil: Worldwide estimate – 2:1 to 3:1 U.S. estimate – 7:1, because many U.S. fields are mature and past their peak production Many older U.S. wells have ratios > 50:1 At some point the cost of managing the produced water exceeds the profit from selling the oil. When this point is reached, the well is shut in. In contrast, a coal bed methane well initially produces a large volume of water, which declines over time. The methane production starts low, builds to a peak, and then decreases.

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