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Lecture in “Shale Gas in North America the Real Risks
October 1, 2012

Maurice B.  Dusseault,   PhD, PEng
Professor of Geological Engineering
Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario. Canada


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Massive staged hydraulic fracturing of long horizontal wells has opened up vast new fossil fuel resources, mainly shale gas, but also light oil resources in low-permeability strata. Each horizontal well can be on the order of one to three kilometers long in the reservoir, with as many as 20-30 locations along the well length that are stimulated by aggressive hydraulic fracturing to generate sufficient drainage volume and surface area to allow economic production of the resource. Some of these wells may require 25,000 m3 of water for the hydraulic fracture stimulation, and massive shale gas development in the United States and British Columbia may involve several wells per square kilometer. Other areas in Canada may soon experience development of shale gas resources, including Quebec, New Brunswick, Alberta and Saskatchewan, the Yukon and the Northwest Territories.  The seminar addresses questions including: why hydraulic fracturing is used in Shale Gas development; typical well designs; fracturing requirements; water requirements: sources, impacts and options; fracturing fluid design and chemicals involved; and fracture fluid flow back and handling (treatment and reuse, disposal).


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