Energy-water nexus : Information on the quantity, quality, and management of water produced during oil and gas production. Report to the Ranking Member, Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, House of Representatives. U.S. Government Accountability Office, Jan. 2012, 56 p.
Water is a significant byproduct associated with oil and gas exploration and production. This water, known as “produced water,” may contain a variety of contaminants. If produced water is not appropriately managed or treated, these contaminants may present a human health and environmental risk. GAO was asked to describe (1) what is known about the volume and quality of produced water from oil and gas production; (2) what practices are generally used to manage and treat produced water, and what factors are considered in the selection of each; (3) how produced water management is regulated at the federal level and in selected states; and (4) what federal research and development efforts have been undertaken during the last 10 years related to produced water.