The drought and the renewed call on water resources from the Eagle Ford Shale has been a concern since the beginning of the year when South Texas fell below normal rainfall levels. Water needed for hydraulic fracturing or fracking is now a pull on resources in what is officially the second worst drought on record. Operators are working to limit the impact on South Texas and are beginning to recycle, as well as drill deep water wells. The problem is, in today's world of enormous frack jobs, oil & gas companies use millions of gallons of water to complete each well. Water wells, that are often drilled on the well pad itself, can cost as much as $500,000. That can make completions cost prohibitive in areas with lower economic returns. What was bad a few months ago has only gotten worse, but you can bet the industry is already tackling how to best handle the drought. This isn't the first place water has been an issue. The town of Big Spring is already treating recycled wastewater and you can bet more local towns in South Texas will begin doing the same.
In the midst of the second-worst drought in Texas history, towns across the state are going to extreme measures to cope, capping residential water use, and limiting the number of days households can water their lawns. Earlier this week, the West Texas town of Kemp ran out of water. In Big Spring, the local water district is building a plant to recycle treated wastewater back into the drinking supply.