Gas wastewater treatment facility to begin operations

City-based Eureka Resources will add another gas well wastewater treatment facility to meet the growing needs of the Marcellus Shale industry.

Construction has already begun on the first phase of a 10,000 barrel per day oil and gas wastewater treatment plant at 208 Catawissa Ave..

George Banashefski, Eureka’s vice president for sales and marketing, said the plant will take care of water used for drilling by other companies.

“We are a service industry to the Marcellus industry,” he explained.

More than two dozen companies already contract with Eureka’s wastewater management services.

The company’s flagship Williamsport wastewater treatment plant has been operating since 2008 and handles 10,000 barrels of wastewater per day.

Ground was broken in March for a second Eureka treatment facility near Towanda.

“We are probably 50 to 60 percent done with the one in Bradford County,” said Banashefski.

Company officials noted that the treated effluent/distillate from the city plant could be taken offsite for reuse by gas well developers or discharged to the Williamsport Sanitary Authority under an indirect discharge permit.

“Customers find that the economics of recycling wastewater for reuse and the benefits from an environmental standpoint are working well for them,” said Eureka Resources Chief Executive Officer Daniel J. Ertel. “Growth in the natural gas industry in this area mandates that we continue expansion to ensure enough capacity to meet their needs.”

Banashefski said the plant is fully permitted to operate as a wastewater treatment facility.

He noted that over time some employees could be added for the operation.

“Most of it will be manned by existing staff,” he said. “There will be some incremental additions.”

Recycling and reuse of treated wastewater decreases the use of fresh water, resulting in less truck traffic and deep well injection disposal, according to company officials.

Up to 75 percent of water used for fracking operations in the Marcellus Shale is recycled and/or reused, they noted.