Greywater for Directional Drilling

Recipient of a 2018 ACEC-Illinois Special Achievement Award for Engineering Excellence

Environmental Design International inc. (EDI) was retained by INTREN, Inc. to research the feasibility of using non-potable water as a source of water in directional drilling and to develop protocol and standard operating procedures (SOPs) for the use of non-potable water in directional drilling. Because there is no process under the State of Illinois’ regulations for the use of non-potable water in directional drilling, EDI worked with the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) to develop a state compliant program.

EDI performed field inspections to learn the client’s intended use of the water and researched federal, state, and local standards governing the usage of non-potable water. Based on the research, EDI developed a set of standards to ensure the non-potable water is safe for potential receptors and is compliant with governmental regulations. Non-potable water sources were identified and the water quality results were compared to the non-potable water standards.

Once the research was complete, EDI developed SOPs for identifying non-potable water sources, storage and treatment requirements for non-potable water, and steps to ensure that the water is safe for public watersheds and for construction workers.

EDI submitted the program and SOPs to the IDPH. In a letter dated May 17, 2017, the IDPH concurred with EDI’s proposal, and INTREN started reducing their water use shortly thereafter.  

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