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Interactive Information System on Drilling-Waste Management Practices
Project Number

The goal of the project was to make information on various drilling-waste management options available through the Internet.

This project was funded through DOE's Natural Gas and Oil Technology Partnership Program. The program establishes alliances that combine the resources and experience of the nation's petroleum industry with the capabilities of the national laboratories to expedite research, development, and demonstration of advanced technologies for improved natural gas and oil recovery.


Argonne National Laboratory (ANL)
Argonne, IL

San Ramon, CA

Marathon Oil Company
Houston, TX


ANL developed the technical and regulatory material for DWMIS and designed and built the website. It also worked closely with industry partners ChevronTexaco and Marathon in selecting and reviewing website content.

Before opening DWMIS to public use, it was reviewed by an external panel with representatives from State and Federal governments, major producers, independent producers, and service companies to ensure that the material was accurate.

Project Results
Drilling waste management practices vary throughout the world and are subject to legal requirements imposed by regulatory agencies to protect human health and the environment in particular jurisdictions. ANL has developed a Drilling-Waste Management Information System (DWMIS) website, which summarizes applicable technologies and regulatory information for individual states and federal agencies.

ANL worked with industry partners ChevronTexaco and Marathon Oil to develop an interactive website that provides comprehensive information on drilling-waste management. DWMIS was placed online June 2, 2004 (

DWMIS will benefit both small independent and large multinational operators by providing easy access to U.S. regulations and waste management options, thus allowing them to choose the option with the most environmental and economic benefits. The regulatory information, with its links back to agency websites, should be a particularly valuable resource. This information will allow operators to select the options with the most environmental and economic benefits. The website will also provide unbiased information to countries developing drilling-waste regulations so that the countries will have a basis for allowing operators to use the most economic, environmentally appropriate waste management options, rather than restricting operators to only those options that are commonly used in a particular country.

Project Summary
The DWMIS website is designed to provide tools and information that meet the practical needs of users, including technical information about drilling waste management options, access to federal and state regulatory requirements, and an easy-to-use tool for selecting possible options for a user's specific situation.

DWMIS contains three main components:

  • Technology Description Module. This module provides basic information about practices that are currently employed to manage drilling wastes. The module divides management practices into three sections-waste minimization, recycle/reuse, and disposal. Users can click on links to any of the listed technologies to access separate fact sheets describing each technology and including references for additional information.
  • Regulatory Module. This module identifies and summarizes existing State and Federal regulations or guidelines that form the regulatory context for drilling waste management. In the Federal regulatory section of this page, users can click on links for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), or the Minerals Management Service (MMS) to be sent to pages that offer more information about each agency's requirements. In the States regulatory section of the page, users can click on any State link to be linked to a summary page that includes information about the agencies that regulate drilling-waste management in that state. All of the agency pages will contain external links leading to agency websites and to the specific texts of the agencies drilling-waste management regulations.
  • Technology Identification Module. In the interactive Technology Identification Module, users are asked to answer a series of questions (requiring mostly "yes" or "no" answers). The replies to these questions lead users through a decision tree, resulting in a suggested subset of waste management options that would make the most sense for a given geographical or environmental setting. The Technology Identification Module does not attempt to tell a company exactly which technology should be employed; rather, it helps to eliminate options that are not appropriate to the user's specific location.
Current Status

(October 2004)
The project is complete.

Project Start
Project End
DOE Contribution


Performer Contribution


Contact Information

NETL - David Alleman ( or 918-699-2057)
ANL - David Schmalzer ( or 630-252-7723)

Additional Information

The DWMIS that ANL developed for DOE was highlighted in an article in Oil & Gas Journal, August 2, 2004.