Legislation worldwide and current technologies used in the treatment of offshore oil & gas/condensate produced water are mainly aimed at the removal of dispersed hydrocarbons (dispersed oil). Beginning of this century, new insights in the Norwegian part of the North Sea area were obtained on the toxic content of produced water and its impact on the environment. This was recently supported by the Philippines. The effect of new extraction based technologies like the Macro Porous Polymer Extraction (MPPE) technology on the reduction of the Environmental Impact and the specific dissolved toxic constituents are described. A recent case showed that at still the same Total Organic Carbon Levels (TOC) the biotreatment ceased due to an increase of the toxic content. Integral parameters like BOD, COD, TOC are of limited value in identifying the toxic content. The MPPE technology is described, industrial applications show a > 99% reduction of the toxic content in produced waterstreams. Finally conclusions are presented regarding trends in legislation, fundamental technological mechanisms that are required for approaches to treat produced water to meet present and future legislation.
The removal of toxic dissolved and dispersed hydrocarbons from oil and gas produced water