Railroad Commission of Texas NORM Seminars San Antonio, Corpus Christi, Pampa Fall 2004 Railroad Commission of Texas NORM Seminar Series Presenters RRCSteven J. Seni Assistant Director for Environmental Services TDSHSCindy Cardwell Deputy DirectorDepartment of State Health
Services, Bureau of Radiation Control Lotus LLCGeri Cooley HES Manager and Regulatory Affairs Railroad Commission of Texas New Rules Governing Oil and Gas NORM Steven J. Seni Assistant Director for Environmental Services
Chapter 4 Subchapter F (16 TAC 4.601- 4.632) Replaces Statewide Rule 94 (previous rule) Previous Commission authority (Statewide Rule 94) addressed disposal of oil and gas NORM to protect public health, safety, and the environment What is Oil and Gas NORM Waste Anything that constitutes, is contained in, or has contaminated oil and gas waste and exceeds the TDSHS exemption
criteria of 50 R/hr emanation rate or has a concentration of greater than 30 pCi/gm Oil and Gas NORM Chapter 4 Subchapter F (16 TAC 4.601- 4.632) Why Amend Rule? SB 1338 authorized the Commission to require operator/owner to determine if oil and gas equipment is contaminated with NORM and to identify contaminated equipment
Bring RRC regulations back in conformance with TDSHS radiation regulations Simplify rule structure Background RRC NORM Survey In 1998 Legislature required RRC to perform NORM survey In 2000, the RRC surveyed +600 leases 59 leases had equipment > 50 R/hr Of 6000 measurements 3.4% were above 50 R/hr Maximum reading >1000 R/hr Water tanks, gun barrels, and flow lines had
highest readings RRC NORM Survey Results 600 Mean Fields 500 18 District 8
16 12 District 7C 300 District 2 District 4 200
District 5 District 7B District 9 District 10 District 3 100 10
District 6 District 8A District 1 8 6 4 2 0
0 Districts Number of Fields>50mR/hr 14 400 MeanReading>50mR/hr Dist 7C Many
Fields Dist 8 High Intensity 20 NORM Survey Older Fields = Higher NORM Average NORM (all > 50 uR/hr) uR/hr
reading of field increases with age of field Average NORM >50 400 300 200 100 0 1911- 1921- 1931- 1941- 1951- 1961- 1971- 1981- 199120 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 00
Year of Field Discovery NORM Pathway into O&G Waste NORM primarily accumulates in o&g waste when radium is dissolved and carried to surface by produced water Radium is concentrated in scale and sludge when precipitated with Ba-, Sr-, or Ca-SO 4 NORM also accumulates in gas processing facilities when radon decays to lead-210. Radon decay elements accumulate on inner surface of gas processing piping (propaneethane processing)
Thanks to Nuclear Radiation Industry for Confusion Units Roentgen/hr (radiation exposure) Rem/hr (also units of Sv or sieverts) (human dosage) pCi/g (concentration per mass) pCi/m2/s (concentration per area over time) Rads (also units of grays) = micro = millionth p = pico = billionth Chapter 4 Subchapter F
Purpose 4.601 Establish requirements for identification of NORM contaminated equipment and disposal of oil and gas NORM to protect public health, safety and environment Provisions do not supercede rules of the Texas Department of Health (new TDSHS) Chapter 4 Subchapter F Exclusions and Exemptions 4.602 Exclusionsrecycling oil and gas NORM; decontamination; possession, use, transfer, transport, and storage; and worker
protection standards all are under TDSHS Exemptionsdisposal of produced water by well or discharge to water; disposal of decontaminated equipment Chapter 4 Subchapter B Identification of Equipment 4.605 NORM-contaminated equipment must be identified with NORM tag If RRC has previously identified NORM contaminated equipment, then effective date is September 3, 2003 Otherwise effective date is March 3, 2005
Chapter 4 Subchapter B Identification of Equipment 4.605 Radiation survey instruments shall comply with TDSHS regulations in 25 TAC 289.259(e) Detector sensitivity shall be from 1 R/hr to 500 R/hr Instruments shall be calibrated, appropriate, and operable Chapter 4 Subchapter B Identification of Equipment 4.605
Operator must identify NORMcontaminated oil and gas equipment with a securely attached, clearly visible tag or by marking with paint or ink If appropriate tag may include acronym for NORM in additional languages Chapter 4 Subchapter B Identification of Equipment 4.605 Interconnected equipment (ie wellhead) that is NORM contaminated may be identified with a single tag while in service. Out-of-service, contaminated equipment, removed from its prior interconnected
status, shall be identified individually or as bundled or containerized group Chapter 4 Subchapter F Worker Protection Standards 4.608 Persons who dispose of oil and gas NORM shall comply with provisions of TDSHS regulation 25TAC289.202 including
Radiation protection program Occupations dose control Surveys and monitoring Signs and labels Record keeping Chapter 4 Subchapter F Worker Protection Standards 4.608 TDSHS worker protection standards are not adopted by reference because staff is not trained to enforce TDSHS regulations However, operators shall comply with
appropriate TDSHS regulations when disposing of NORM Chapter 4 Subchapter F Prohibited Disposal 4.611 Disposal by discharge to surface or subsurface water is prohibited Disposal by spreading on public roads is prohibited Burial or landfarming on lease where generated is authorized by rule All other disposal requires a permit
Chapter 4 Subchapter F Authorized Disposal 4.614 Placement in P&A wellbore Burial or Landfarming on lease where NORM waste is generated By disposal at licensed facility or by injection at facility licensed by the TDSHS, if authorized to receive such waste Chapter 4 Subchapter F Authorized Disposal 4.614 MethodPlacement in a P&A wellbore Authorized disposal in P&A wellbore
At least 250 ft below usable quality water If placed in tubing, must be retrievable Nature of tubing must be known (size, grade, weight, depth) Cement plug must be set above CIBP or tagged Cement must be died with red iron oxide Well marked with radiation symbol Surf. owner consent required if waste is from off lease Form W-3A--nature, volume, level, and source Chapter 4 Subchapter F Authorized Disposal 4.614
Authorized disposal by burial On site where generated After mixing, concentration of NORM waste must be less than 30 pCi/g of Ra-226 and Ra228 or 150 pCi/g of other radionuclides before burial Contaminated equipment may not be buried Chapter 4 Subchapter F Authorized Disposal 4.614 Authorized disposal by landfarming On site where generated Concentration of NORM waste must be less than 30 pCi/g of Ra-226 and Ra-228 or 150
pCi/g of other radionuclides after mixing Chapter 4 Subchapter F Authorized Disposal 4.614 Authorized disposal by injection of O&G NORM waste treated at a TDSHS licensed facility in a RRC Rule 9 permitted well Operator notifies Commission in writing that waste meets exemption criteria Operator includes copy of TDSHS license Operator obtains documentation that waste meets exemption criteria
Chapter 4 Subchapter F Permit Required for Injection 4.617 Standards for issuance of permit Required to reasonably protect public health, safety, and environment Must meet standards for Rule 9 injection well Must supply following NORM information Physical nature, volume, and level of NORM Notice requirements must include NORM information Chapter 4 Subchapter F Permit for Surface Disposal 4.620
Standards for issuance of permit Required to reasonably protect public health, safety, and environment; and meet application requirements of 3.8 Concentration of NORM waste must be less than than 30 pCi/g of Ra-226 + Ra-228 or 150 pCi/g of other radionuclides after mixing Concentration of NORM waste must be less than 30 pCi/g of Ra226 + Ra-228 or 150 pCi/g of other radionuclides before burial Must supply following NORM information Physical nature, volume, level of NORM, and background Dust control methods Written authorization from surface owner Notice requirements must include NORM information Chapter 4 Subchapter F
Alternatives 4.623 The Commission may approve alternatives to conditions in permitting NORM disposal by injection or surface disposal if alternative methods are protective of public health, safety, and environment Applicant must submit alternatives in writing Review will be completed in 30 days Chapter 4 Subchapter F Recordkeeping 4.626 The operator shall maintain records on the exposure level of equipment, date, location, and
identification of equipment The operator of a unit that generates NORM waste shall maintain records on Identity of generating property and producing formation Identity of facility/lease receiving waste Nature, volume, and level of NORM waste (in pCi/gm) Chapter 4 Subchapter F Recordkeeping 4.626 The operator of a unit that generates NORM waste shall maintain records on:
Operator of lease where waste was generated Generating property & producing formation Facility/lease receiving waste Nature, volume, & level of NORM (in pCi/gm) on the exposure level of equipment, date, location, and identification of equipment Chapter 4 Subchapter F
Recordkeeping 4.626 Records shall be retained for 5 years Retention period shall be extended during any pending Commission enforcement proceeding The operator who maintains the records shall make them available for examination and copying during reasonable working hours and shall file such records on request. Recordkeeping requirements effective 3/3/2003 Chapter 4 Subchapter F Inspection 4.629 The Commission shall have access to
properties as provided by the Texas Natural Resources Code Chapter 4 Subchapter F Penalties 4.632 A person who violates requirements of this subchapter may be subject of penalties and remedies as specified in the Texas Natural Resources Code (85.0531) and be subject of revocation of the certificate of compliance Penalties are up to $10,000/day/violation
Texas Department of Health If an oil and gas operator possesses, uses, transfers, transports, or stores oil and gas equipment that contains NORM with an emanation rate of 50 R/hr at any accessible point, then the operator is a general licensee of the TDSHS and subject or requirements of 25 TAC 289.259 Texas Department of Health TDSHS is the Texas state radiation control agency TDSHS regulates possession, use, transfer,
transport, and storage of NORM; recycling of NORM; and decontamination of equipment TDSHS sets and enforces standards for worker protection NORM Information Resources American Petroleum Institute http://api-ep.api.org/filelibrary/ACF1BE.pdf Interstate Oil & Gas Compact Commission http://www.iogcc.state.ok.us/NORM U.S. Dept of Energy http://www.ead.anl.gov/pub/dsp_detail.cfm?pubId=37
U.S. Geological Survey http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/fs-0142-99/ U.S. Environmental Protection Agency http://www.epa.gov/radiation/tenorm/about.htm Railroad Commission of Texas http://www.rrc.state.tx.us
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