Reduce/Reuse/Recycle Approach in Managing Onshore Drilling Waste

A drilling campaign was carried out in Senoro, an onshore major gas/condensate field in East Indonesia, to drill 12 wells at four clusters, consisting of four re-entry wells and eight new development wells in the North Senoro Gas Field.

By using water-base mud as the drilling fluid for the overall well sections, the drilling operations generated two primary types of wastes—solid waste and liquid waste. Solid wastes consist of drilling cutting, used drilling fluid in its solid phase, and contaminated packaging materials. Liquid wastes consist of used organic chemicals and the drilling waste water produced from the fluid dewatering system.

Under the Governmental of Indonesia Regulation No.18 JO 85/1999 regarding hazardous and toxic waste management, drilling cutting and used drilling fluid were categorized as hazardous waste. The used organic chemicals and contaminated packaging also were categorized as hazardous by the law and, hence, required specific treatments to manage the drilling waste. Drilling waste water was required to be managed under the discharge limitation regulation of Act of Ministry of Environment No. 10/2010.

In this case study, through a waste-minimization concept, a reduce/reuse/recycle approach is used to manage the produced drilling waste. Initiated by an engineering design that was taken thorough deep assessment to use water-based and nonchloride-content mud material, a drilling waste management flow diagram was developed and applied to manage waste related to the drilled well, both general solid waste and general liquid waste.

By applying the selected drilling waste management flow diagram, the North Senoro drilling campaign can be performed within the waste-minimization concept and all discharged parameters can be ensured to be within the regulation discharge limit.

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