The petroleum industry interacts with the groundwater resource on many fronts.
For the seismic end of the oil field operations, Hydrogeological Consultants Ltd. (HCL) provides direction to ensure that seismic shot holes are not drilled in areas where flowing conditions may occur. When problems are created by uncontrolled flowing shot holes, HCL can provide services to mitigate the problems.
For many enhanced oil recovery projects, the most accessible water is groundwater. HCL provides services to locate, develop and evaluate groundwater supplies. Responsible use of the groundwater resource requires groundwater monitoring; the level of effort for the groundwater monitoring is determined by Alberta Environment. HCL can provide the services to meet the groundwater monitoring need. The use of groundwater with less than 4,000 milligrams per litre of total dissolved solids in Alberta requires a licence under the Water Act.
As part of seismic programs and the drilling of hydrocarbon wells, water well owners can be concerned that the activities could have a negative effect on their groundwater supply. HCL provides services to set up programs to collect background information related to the water wells and the groundwater resource in an area and to attend information sessions to help the general public to understand.
When problems with water wells do develop, HCL provides services to collect relevant data to establish the most probable cause of the water well problem.
When fluids are brought to the land surface and moved and stored, occasionally the fluids spill on the ground. HCL provides services to establish the impact that a spill has had on the groundwater resource and to outline mitigative measures.