A Case Study on Frac Sand and ESG (Environmental, Social & Corporate Governance)

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A Case Study on Frac Sand and ESG (Environmental, Social & Corporate Governance)

In our latest blog post, we would like to give a high-level summary of a case study on Canadian E&P Crew Energy. Crew Energy has been focused on continuous improvement on the ESG front, such as water transfer through existing pipelines, and natural gas to power drilling and hydraulic fracturing. However, a major improvement to their ESG efforts came through the locally sourced frac sand, resulting in reduced environmental impact in addition to reduced costs.

Crew Partnered with Sil Industrial Minerals (leading Canadian frac sand producer) and Catapult™  Solutions (industry-leading last-mile logistics and well site storage provider) for a project in NEBC. For the project, they pumped 20,000 tons in 14 days across a 4 well pad.

Key Results

  • GHG Emissions Reduction: 55% GHG emissions reduction related to frac sand supply and logistics. By using local sand versus imported sand, haul distances were reduced by 2800 km each way.
  • Reduced Eco-Footprint: Catapult™  provides the industry’s most compact well site footprint for hydraulic fracturing while maintaining flexibility for site constraints.
  • Reduced Completions Costs: Eliminated significant non-productive time (NPT) costs related to frac sand storage. Cost reductions for frac sand supply and last-mile logistics helped Crew reduce completions costs by 26%.

In addition to these key achievements, the project also boasted a perfect safety record, as well as supporting the local economy, women in energy, a vendor (Sil) with strong ESG performance throughout its mining, processing, and reclamation operations, and posting better-than-expected well production results on the 4-well pad.

Plus, by capitalizing on shorter transportation distances than when using imported frac sand, Crew Energy was able to boast a whopping 73% GHG reduction when the same project was implemented for their Duvernay operations in Alberta, indicating that these solutions are scalable.

In summary, frac efficiency and ESG solutions are not always diametrically opposed. In fact, some ESG solutions deliver value to frac efficiency and lower costs as well, and we expect these operational changes to continue, especially if they can hit “two birds with one stone”.

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