XTO COMMENTS TO MANSFIELD CITY COUNCIL ON PROPOSED AMENDMENTS TO GAS DRILLING ORDINANCE… note I boldfaced for emphasis and put comments in (parenthesis)
“Section 114.13 (B) – XTO strongly disagrees with the proposal to only use electric motors for drilling operations. This stipulation would apply to virtually all drillsites within the City of Mansfield and becomes a wholesale change in an operator’s ability to select the best means of powering the systems on our rig fleet. This proposal also has farther reaching implications in suggesting that all wellsite activities be converted to electric power. We believe that using a power substation has more potential to interfere with the lives of the public than the drone of diesel-electric engines.”
Drone as in noise……. what about harmful diesel emissions in the urban neighborhoods?
I do agree with XTO though on the second part of their comments …
“Electric transformers are specialized and must be unique for each power supply and sized appropriately for each drilling operation. All transformers must be equipped with voltage attenuators which would keep rig power surges from coursing back through the power supply and into the surrounding neighborhood grid with excess voltage. In the event the substation lost power or could not supply the rig with power we would have to switch directly over to diesel power to conduct operations. The normal start-up time for generators is 20 minutes which we could not afford from a well control standpoint. XTO currently operates Dual Fuel systems on our rigs to lower our emissions during drilling operations. This system uses natural gas in our lean burn engines and lessens our emission footprint in the Metroplex.”
Regarding the Dual Fuel systems …. Caterpillar developed an engine that I heard uses natural gas (but alas they tout the money savings in using the unpurified DIRTY FIELD GAS...uuugh!!) for their engines during fracking that switches back to diesel fuel during engine idling. It doesn’t surprise me that XTO wants to use that technology during the drilling phase because it is probably way cheaper for them to not have to bring in electrical poles on each padsite.
We all can agree that well control is priority…electric brown or black outs = bad for any phase of an urban padsite in emissions being vented in an “upset” or well control/failure events.
So why the hell did we start urban drilling if we knew high diesel engine emissions would be spewing near people?
Our Arlington Gaswell Dept. says that all the drilling rigs used in Arlington were electric, but I’m not so sure about that.