Kemira Water Solutions, Inc.

Biodegradable products enhance oil production case study


Courtesy of Kemira Water Solutions, Inc.

Kemira’s biodegradable products play an important role in oil production in the North Sea.

When seawater is injected into the deposits to move oil toward the drill pipes, it comes into contact with a different type of water: the water under the seabed. These two types of water do not mix well, and the layers of scale that form as a result may damage pipelines and halt production.

The scale can be removed using acid treatments, but a more sensible solution is to prevent scale from forming in the first place. Biodegradable water chemicals provide the most ecological solution to this problem. Norwegian oil drilling areas in the North Sea, with their challenging conditions, serve as an important reference case for Kemira, as this area has the strictest environmental requirements in the world. The results have been excellent.

Projects in the North Sea lead the way, but the general trend is the same everywhere: the demand for biodegradable products in oil production is increasing around the world.

Norway considers a chemical biodegradable if 60 percent of the chemical decomposes within 28 days. Kemira believes that the coming years will mark a breakthrough for biodegradable chemicals in these applications.

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