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Produced Water Working Group



September 2020

May 2020

  • The O&G Produced Water and Waste Recycling and Reuse Act was signed into law by Governor Stitt. Sponsored by Senator Rader and Representatives O'Donnell, Davis, and McBride, the Act encourages the important efforts of PW recycling & reuse in OK by alleviating much of the uncertainty regarding ownership of PW when extracted during O&G operations. The Act:
    • defines terms
    • declares legislative findings on oil and gas produced water and waste
    • establishes ownership of subterranean water and constituent elements
    • construes clause
    • declares ownership, rights and responsibilities of certain persons for oil and gas produced water and waste
    • establishes responsibility for certain actions with oil and gas produced water and waste
    • provides that certain persons are not liable in tort for certain actions regarding use of recycled water or treated constituents
    • authorizes disposal of produced water and waste with certain permitting
    • establishes applicability of Oklahoma Brine Development Act to certain oil and gas produced water and waste
    • is effective November 1, 2020
  • May 11 EPA finalized its report on PW management in aSummary of Input on O&G Extraction Wastewater Management Practices Under the Clean Water Act. The report is an update to the EPA's May 2019 draft report summarizing input from stakeholders regarding management of produced water from onshore oil and gas extraction activities. The final report provides updated information reflecting input received from states, tribes and stakeholders. The Agency is still determining what, if any, next steps should be taken regarding produced water management under the Clean Water Act. Public input, existing effluent guidelines, and other related information is available on the EPA's website.




The Water for 2060 Advisory Council's recommendations for the energy and industry sector include promoting the industrial use of marginal quality waters, such as produced water, and increasing opportunities for energy and industry water users to share information and supplies. On Dec. 1, 2015, Governor Mary Fallin announced the formation of a fact-finding work group to look at ways that water produced in oil and natural gas operations may be recycled or reused instead of being injected into underground disposal wells.

The non-regulatory Water for 2060 Produced Water Working Group has been charged with identifying regulatory, technical, and economic barriers to produced water reuse as well as looking at opportunities and challenges associated with treating produced water for beneficial uses, such as industrial use, or crop irrigation.


  • Julie Cunningham, Chair (OWRB)
  • Fred Fischer (Oklahoma Panhandle Agriculture & Irrigation Association)
  • Bud Ground (Environmental Federation of Oklahoma)
  • Brent Kisling (Oklahoma Department of Commerce)
  • Dr. Jason Vogel (Oklahoma Water Survey / OU)
  • Dr. Clint Aichele (Oklahoma State University)
  • Mark Matheson (Oklahoma Rural Water Association)
  • Mike Mathis (Continental Resources)
  • Neal McCaleb (Ambassador, Chickasaw Nation)
  • Mike Paque (Ground Water Protection Council)
  • Blayne Arthur, Sec. of Agriculture (Department of Agriculture, Food & Forestry)
  • Shawn Coslett (Oklahoma Corporation Commission)
  • Alan Riffel (Oklahoma Municipal League)
  • Terry Stowers (Coalition of Oklahoma Surface & Mineral Owners)
  • Scott Thompson (Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality)
  • Usha Turner (Oklahoma Gas & Electric)


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