Drilling fluids (both water-based and non-aqueous) and drill cuttings are the largest waste streams generated by offshore drilling operations. Safe and responsible disposal of these materials are therefore an industry priority.
Building on good practices developed since the 1970s, IOGP’s latest report on the subject is the work of an Environment Committee task force formed in 2014 to better coordinate industry efforts on drilling waste management. In particular, Report 543 builds on research over the last decade that has advanced understanding of the environmental fates and effects of ocean discharge of drill cuttings and associated fluids. It also records the industry’s progress in dealing with the non-aqueous drilling fluids that have enabled the advance of new drilling technologies.
Other data included in the report will be useful to those engaged in the design and implementation of future studies on the environmental impacts of offshore discharges.
Environmental fates and effects of ocean discharge of drill cuttings and associated drilling fluids from offshore oil and gas operations is freely available here.