Spatial Variability of Coalbed Natural Gas Produced Water Quality, Powder River Basin, Wyoming: Implications for Future Development

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In January 2013, the Wyoming State Geological Survey published a Report of Investigation titled “Spatial Variability of Coalbed Natural Gas Produced Water Quality, Powder River Basin, Wyoming: Implications for Future Development,” by Scott A. Quillinan and Carol D. Frost.

This research covers coalbed natural gas (CBNG) production in Wyoming’s Powder River Basin. To date, approximately 12 percent of the CBNG resources has been produced. The CBNG resources that remain will require the continued production of large volumes of water. With the information presented in this study, it is possible to estimate the produced water quality of future development within producing coal zones. The available water quality data suggest that most of the CBNG produced water in the Powder River Basin can be used to water livestock and, with careful management practices, irrigate salt-tolerant plants.