Impacts of Hydraulic Fracturing Infrastructure on Storm Runoff Characteristics

The United States has seen a dramatic rise in the number of horizontal hydraulic fracturing wells drilled since 2009. Each well requires supporting infrastructure that includes a large well pad along with access roads and pipelines that result in the removal of vegetation and creation of bare ground or gravel conditions that can alter storm runoff patterns. The objective of this study was to explore the effects of land conversion for shale oil and gas development on storm flow characteristics of streams in eastern Ohio. Using stream flow records, land cover type from satellite photos, and other publically available land data, the density of wells within a treatment watershed and the proportion of upland area used for oil and gas activities was compared with storm flow characteristics for the watershed before and after energy development and with a neighboring control watershed. Storm flow duration, peak flow and runoff volume significantly decreased in the treatment watershed after shale oil and gas development.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: pp 177-184
  • Monograph Title: World Environmental and Water Resources Congress 2016: Professional Development, Innovative Technology, International Perspectives, and History and Heritage

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01600784
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780784479841
  • Files: TRIS, ASCE
  • Created Date: May 18 2016 3:01PM