Bracewell Partner Lytch Gutmann recently spoke with Bloomberg about the ways in which exploration and production companies are looking to offload the handling of their wastewater, most notably in the Permian Basin.
“Producers have historically dealt with that themselves kind of out of sheer necessity and bought or acquired pipelines, disposal wells,” said Gutmann. “But those aren’t their core assets. They’re really to support the producers’ oil and gas assets.”
Increasingly private equity-backed water midstream companies are buying up explorers’ water businesses. The companies dispose of wastewater – laden with salt and chemicals from the fracking process – or treat the water and send it back to the driller to be re-used.