Texas A&M University-Kingsville is pulling its resources to try and help ensure the sustainable development of the Eagle Ford Shale play.
The University is focusing its resources on research, education and outreach to try and address some of the challenges that come along with the economic opportunity and growth of the Eagle Ford Shale play.
The booming Eagle Ford Shale play and its oil and gas recovery and production have led to lots of economic opportunities and growth, but with that growth also comes challenges.
"It's like the old California gold rush," said Dr. Stephan Nix, Dean of the College of Engineering at TAMUK. "I mean, that was a great thing, but along with that came a lot of problems and a lot of issues. In many ways, this is the same."
The growth of the Eagle Ford Shale play is having a huge impact across South Texas, affecting communities and putting stress on infrastructure, roads, resources and the environment.
"They used to frack a well in East Texas, years ago. It cost, it took about a million gallons of water to frack a well," said Kim Jones, chair of the Environmental Engineering Department at TAMUK. "Now these Eagle Ford wells cost, I think they're taking about five million gallons of water."
Through its College of Engineering, TAMUK is hoping to tackle some of those challenges through research, education and outreach. The University will be using its labs to do the analysis.
"This instrument is used to analyze water samples, and can also be used to analyze soil samples collected from the Eagle Ford Shale area, in order to analyze for heavy metal concentrations," graduate research assistant Jessica Schnupp said. "This laboratory will be used in a lot of the analysis and research that will be conducted on the Eagle Ford Shale area."
By focusing its resources and teaming up with industry, government, faculty and students, the University is hoping it can help communities plan for the growth the Eagle Ford Shale promises and delivers, and help lead the way for a more sustainable future.
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