Measuring Radioactivity Associated with Solid and Liquid Waste from Marcellus Shale

Topics in Shale Gas Exploration and Production
Oral Presentation

Prepared by A. Nelson
University of Iowa, Chemistry Building, Iowa City, Iowa, 52242, United States


Contact Information: andrew-w-nelson@uiowa.edu; 319-335-1350


ABSTRACT

Although there are numerous socioeconomic benefits of natural gas, toxicants in wastes generated by drilling activities present potential environmental and public health risks. One class of toxicants of concern in waste streams generated by shale gas extraction is naturally occurring radioactive materials (NORM). Despite receiving considerable media attention, the environmental and public health risks posed by NORM remain poorly characterized. This is in part due to the lack of accurate, precise, and comprehensive radioanalytical methodology that is suitable for the complex matrices in drilling wastes. This presentation will discuss recent developments, limitations, and future directions for detecting NORM in produced fluids and in drill cuttings from the Marcellus Shale and other formations.