Produced saltwater lies at the heart of all oil and gas production. As many as seven barrels of saltwater are produced for every barrel of oil and gas equivalent produced from a well in the United States. Managing and harnessing the potential of our produced saltwater resources has opened a new frontier in Texas and the global petroleum business, including the development of new oilfield recycling technologies and sustainability strategies.
Unique in the oil and gas industry, saltwater disposal (“SWD”) combines legal concerns previously connected principally to exploration and production, such as title examination, permitting, and lease management, with issues more common to midstream and oilfield services players, such as complex contracts and regulatory matters. This has driven complexity in commercial contracts and regulatory permitting, distinguishing the produced saltwater business from its oil and gas peers.
Following in the footsteps of our former colleague and legendary oil & gas attorney, A. W. Walker, Jr., Jackson Walker attorneys have pioneered creative legal strategies and contractual arrangements to protect the rights of produced saltwater industry players in Texas and beyond. We have represented SWD operators in mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, and financings in connection with produced saltwater wells, pipelines, and logistics assets. Our attorneys are well-versed in the regulatory and commercial aspects of the produced saltwater business, and we have advised clients both on commercial strategies and before regulatory authorities such as the Texas Railroad Commission.
Our produced saltwater clients rely on the skill and experience of Jackson Walker attorneys across a broad range of diverse specialties, such as regulatory, litigation, environmental, intellectual property, corporate finance, and tax.
- Routinely representing private produced saltwater logistics and disposal company in the negotiation of numerous commercial agreements for logistics and disposal services.
- Represented MLP in $33 million equity sale of produced saltwater trucking and disposal business to private equity-backed portfolio company.
- Represented public company in $7.5 million asset sale of produced saltwater trucking, gathering and disposal business to private operator.
- Represented private operator in acquisition of $7.5 million saltwater disposal asset.
- Represented private equity-backed portfolio company in equity sale of produced solid waste disposal site to another private equity-backed portfolio company.
- Represented private operator in negotiation and drafting of commercial produced saltwater gathering, connection and disposal agreements across vast acreage prospect.
- Represented numerous private equity-backed portfolio companies in the negotiation and drafting of numerous commercial farmout, connection, disposal and acreage dedication agreements for produced saltwater infrastructure.
- Represented energy midstream company in its purchase of produced water infrastructure from E&P company, concurrent with the execution of a 15-year acreage dedication to provide produced water gathering, disposal and recycling services to the seller. Acquired assets consisted of over 37 miles of pipeline, nine salt water disposal wells, four Ellenburger salt water disposal well permits, and several third-party interconnects.
- Represent energy midstream company focused on water in all of their service agreements with third-party producers.
- Represented energy midstream company in acquisition of produced water assets valued at $150 million from E&P seller.
- Represented provider of produced water infrastructure solutions in its acquisition of saltwater disposal wells and related pipeline.
- Advised provider of produced water infrastructure solutions in the acquisition of operating produced water infrastructure assets, including 23 saltwater disposal wells and 300 miles of water gathering pipelines.
- Represented integrated midstream company in successful divestiture of its saltwater disposal, crude oil truck transportation, and logistics businesses. Divestiture included sale of a salt water transportation and disposal company, all of the crude oil truck transportation business, all of the motor vehicle dealer and licensing business, crude oil pipeline injection terminals, and related LACT units and facilities.
May 1, 2023
The Third Annual Oilfield Water Markets Conference will feature a panel including Jackson Walker partner Pat Knapp as they discuss produced water and recent legal and policy developments. Fellow panelists include Ryan Sears (O’Melveny & Myers LLP), Keith Gardner (KJG Strategies), Justin Love (Blackbuck Resources), and Isaac Griesbaum (Winston & Strawn, LLP).
September 22, 2022
EPA May Try to Block What Could Be the First Seawater Desalination Plant Built in Texas | The Texas Tribune
Citing water quality concerns, the Environmental Protection Agency may refuse to recognize a permit that Texas approved on Thursday, September 22 for a marine desalination plant at the Port of Corpus Christi.
Jackson Walker partner Craig Bennett, as counsel to the Port Aransas Conservancy, which opposes the plant, told The Texas Tribune that he’s concerned that the TCEQ has set a bad precedent for permitting marine desalination plants. “We are not opposed to desalination,” he noted. “There’s no reason they can’t run the discharge out into the gulf.”
July 27, 2022
Wednesday, July 27, 2022 | 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. CT
Join Patrick Knapp, Reagan Marble, Ben Rhem, and Taylor Holcomb for this upcoming webinar as they provide an overview of how the midstream water business is among the fastest-growing segments of the oil and gas industry.
Jackson Walker represents saltwater disposal operators in all aspects of the produced saltwater business. Our attorneys assist on matters including:
- Exploration and production
- Title examination
- Permitting and lease management
- Complex commercial contracts
- Regulatory permitting
- Mergers and acquisitions
- Joint ventures
- Financing of produced saltwater wells, pipelines and logistics assets
- Litigation affecting produced water