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Public Perception of Desalinated Water from Oil and Gas Field Operations: Data from Texas

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Data collected in two counties in north central Texas were used to empirically explore issues associated with public perception of desalinated water from oil and gas field operations. The data reveal that small percentages of respondents are extremely familiar with the process of desalination and extremely confident that desalinated water could meet human drinking water quality and purity standards. The data also indicate that respondents are more favorably disposed toward the use of desalinated water for purposes where the probability of human or animal ingestion is lessened. Lastly, the data show that respondents who are more familiar with desalination technology are more likely than those who are less familiar to believe that desalinated oil and gas field water could safely be used for selected purposes. Possible implications of these findings are advanced, as are suggestions for future research.

Keywords: brine; desalination; energy; natural gas; oil; public perception; water

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Sociology, Sam Houston State University, Hunstville, Texas, USA 2: Mississippi State University Extension Service, Starkville, Mississippi, USA 3: Blackland Research and Extension Center, Temple, Texas, USA 4: Harold Vance Department of Petroleum Engineering, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, USA

Publication date: 2009-08-01

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