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Pre-drill water-quality testing has emerged as a critical topic related to the use of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in oil and gas operations in the United States. Pre-drill testing involves the collection of water (typically shallow groundwater, but sometimes from springs or surface water) data near an oil and natural gas well pad prior to commencing drilling activities. This practice enables oil and gas operators to establish baseline water-quality conditions prior to drilling, well completion, and production activities. The availability of water-quality baseline data is invaluable for oil and gas operators, the public, and regulatory officials. The data can play a crucial role in responding to environmental challenges by the public or claims that an operator affected water supplies brought by regulatory agencies. Further, pre-drill surveys can be used to document other important information, such as the condition of on-site water sources, including water-well integrity or construction.
Alfa Chemistry is an accredited third party analytical laboratory that has certified in over 1,000 chemical parameters. Our laboratory can provide pre-drill water sampling and testing service in accordance with national standards.
Testing parameters for pre-drill water provided by Alfa Chemistry include:
Oil & Grease
Total Dissolved Solids
Total Suspended Solids
Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene, Xylenes (BTEX)
Nitrate as Nitrogen
MBAS (Methylene Blue Activated Substances; Surfactants/Foaming Agents)
[a]. Consider obtaining isotopic analysis if the pre-drill samples show levels of methane in a water supply that exceed background levels in the area. [b]. If turbidity exceeds 10 ntu, the operator should consider collecting samples for dissolved metals analysis.