One of the prime concerns in the offshore oil drilling industry is that it may do serious damage to the environment. Most of the oil deposits on which the industry depends are located on offshore, which is also home to diverse marine populations. Environmentalists and concerned members of the public have expressed fears that drilling, exploration, and shipping will interfere with the overall health of the marine ecosystem, unless the industry is properly regulated.
The dominant oil field drilling fluids used are synthetic types derived from petroleum products. The manufacturing process consumes a lot of energy and contributes immensely to the greenhouse gas emissions. Even during the usage process they are highly hazardous as they leave chemical residues and contaminate the ground water. The growing concern for environmental protection is forcing enactment of new regulations in terms of emission and residue. Especially environmentalists object the fracking technology which is off late being used dominantly in the U.S. Enforcement of these environmental regulations would pose a major concern for oil field drilling fluids market. Therefore oil production companies restrain using synthetic oil field drilling fluids impacting their market growth.
Oil spills present one of the industry’s gravest environmental hazards. Spills harm marine wildlife both offshore and along adjacent coastlines. Other risks also exist. Large drilling platforms on the banks emit dangerous greenhouse gases, encroach on wildlife habitat, alter the migratory patterns of some seabirds, and increase bird mortality rates. Drilling the wellbore is the first and the most expensive step in the oil and gas industry. Drilling fluids represents up to one fifth (15 to 18%) of the total cost of oilfield well drilling, and generally must comply with three important requirements, which are easy to use, not too expensive and environmentally friendly. The various stake holders in the value chain of oil production are increasingly being aware of hazardous environmental impacts that are caused due to the process of exploration and extraction. They are favouring usage of eco-friendly products due to their ecological benefits. This is where the concept of bio based oilfield drilling fluids comes into picture.
There are so many regulations which are driving the usage of bio based oilfield drilling fluids. These manufacturing processes are safer and releases less chemical effluents, which is mainly because of the use of biomass that produces less CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions. The market size of bio based oilfield drilling fluids is very small compared to synthetic and poised to exhibit rapid demand growth due to aforementioned factors. This would hence, propel the market demand for oil field drilling fluids market.