Arkansas producers put maximum distance between wells and drilling activity. For example, the majority of fresh water wells are less than 500 feet deep in the Fayetteville Shale region. In contrast, the average drilling depth is 1.5 miles below the surface and separated from the aquifer by thousands of feet of impermeable rock.
Heavily reinforced protective casing separate the wellbores from their surroundings and safeguard Arkansas fresh water aquifers. The casings are set a minimum distance of 50 to 1000 feet beneath the aquifers, and are made up of seven layers:
- Conductor Casing
- Cement, sealing conductor casing in place
- Surface Casing
- Cement, sealing surface casing in place
- Production Casing
- Cement, sealing production casing in place