California Oil, Gas and Groundwater 2016


The Latest in the Monitoring, Regulations, Implementation, and Legislation related to Groundwater Protection from Oil and Gas Activities

Monitoring Techniques for Compliance, Aquifer Exemptions, Underground Injection Control, Latest Scientific Findings, Produced Water Treatment, Reuse, and Disposal, and more!





GRA has organized a follow up symposium to our highly successful February 2015 event in Long Beach, CA on the wise protection and monitoring of California groundwater near oil and gas exploration sites. At the time of that event, implementation of Senate Bill SB-4 (2013-Pavley) related to new oil and gas well stimulation requirements was just getting started, and required among other things the State Water Resources Control Board to develop model criteria for groundwater monitoring.

These criteria were adopted by the Water Board on July 7, 2015 after receiving input from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, the U.S. Geological Survey, stakeholder groups including the oil industry, groundwater industry, agriculture, environmental justice, local government officials and other groups, and the general public. The monitoring criteria have three main components, including:

  • Area-Specific groundwater monitoring near stimulation activities required by operators;
  • Requirements for Designated Contactor Sampling and Testing; and
  • Regional scale groundwater monitoring to be implemented by the State Water Board

Details of these new requirements along with case studies of some of the first plans to be drafted and submitted to the Water Board, and the feedback received, will be presented at the Symposium.  Actual groundwater monitoring strategies and ways to address the complicated issues such as determining the base of fresh water and constructing multiple depth monitoring wells will be covered.

In addition, there has been significant activity related to the State’s Underground Injection Control (UIC) program and the issues of exempt aquifers versus non-exempt aquifers that will be covered at the symposium. 

Injection wells and ponds/pits have been the waste disposal options of choice for many oil and gas operators for decades, but recently this practice has come into question where the disposal may be going into non-exempt aquifers, and numerous injection wells and disposal ponds are being investigated and shut down. 

The “California Oil, Gas, and Groundwater 2016 Symposium” is intended to provide the latest information on the successful applications and/or problems encountered with the current requirements for groundwater monitoring and protection related to oil and gas activities in California.  It is intended for petroleum and groundwater geologists, engineers, policy-makers, regulators, legislators, academia, and other interested parties to learn about current practices, operations, and requirements and the successes and challenges that create the context for the relationship between petroleum production and groundwater management in California.

Likely Topics to Be Covered Include:

  • Latest Regulatory Requirements and Activity related to oil, gas, and groundwater.
  • Impact of current low oil prices and California Drought on exploration.
  • Statewide Groundwater Monitoring Program Results near Oil and Gas Fields.
  • Groundwater Management Plans and Data Collection under SB4 and SWRCB Rules:
    • Case studies of successful plans
    • Challenges getting plans approved
    • What’s working / what’s not
    • How to find base of fresh water
    • Where do I find data for my plans?
    • Practical Implementation of plans
    • Alternatives to standard methods
  • Underground Injection Control and Aquifer Exemptions.  What is the process, who makes the decisions, and what are the rules? Is usable groundwater at risk?
  • Produced Water Reuse, Recycling, and Disposal.  Best methods.
    • Oil Field Water Management
    • Source water for well stimulation
    • Treatment technologies
    • Reuse case studies
    • Re-use on agricultural fields or other uses (groundwater recharge?)
  • Pits/Ponds/Fluid containment issues and monitoring.
  • Technologies – groundwater monitoring program tools and methods.  Laboratory analyses for baseline and long term monitoring.  Alternative methods to monitoring wells.
  • Communications with the public
    • Oil industry on their practices
    • Regulators to the public
    • Sharing of information between oil and groundwater  industries
  • Oil fields and groundwater in the California Central Valley
    • Primer on where they are, where they overlap, depths, risks, etc.
  • New bills being considered for legislative fixes to SB4, UIC, or new legislation.
  • Environmental compliance under CEQA for oil/gas well stimulation in areas of usable groundwater
  • And more!  Mark your Calendar Now!


Lunch included. Limited Seating (first 40 sign ups only). Field trip to the Belridge Producing Complex of Aera Energy LLC will take place on the afternoon of November 3rd. The Belridge Producing Complex is located about an hour west/northwest of Bakersfield and includes oil and gas exploration and production operations in the North and South Belridge (sixth most productive field in the U.S.), Lost Hills, Cymric and McKittrick oil fields. Representatives from Aera will discuss how the fields are operated, how production fluids (including water) are handled and will share best practices on communication efforts with neighbors and agriculture as the industry works to build stronger relationships and transparency with the public. Bus will stop occasionally for photo opportunities.

GRA Members - $75.00

Non-Members - $100.00



Exhibitor and Sponsorship opportunities are available for this event to showcase your company’s related products or services, or to show support for the event by sponsoring breaks, lunches, the reception, or the whole event.  If you are interested in any of these activities you can get more information or register as a sponsor or exhibitor online. For additional event information, please contact Sarah Kline, GRA Administrative Director, at; 916-446-3626.


Optional Field Trip

Options Non-Member Registration

Optional Field Trip

Options Member or Speaker Registration


Wed, Nov. 2 - Thu, Nov. 3, 2016

Event has ended


Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center
801 Truxton Avenue
Bakersfield, CA 93301
The Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center is located in the heart of beautiful downtown Bakersfield. Unique amongst hotels in Bakersfield, we are a full-service Bakersfield convention center hotel that is connected to the Rabobank Arena, Theatre & Convention Center complex. Featuring ten meeting rooms and 9,136 sq ft of ...

The Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center is located in the heart of beautiful downtown Bakersfield. Unique amongst hotels in Bakersfield, we are a full-service Bakersfield convention center hotel that is connected to the Rabobank Arena, Theatre & Convention Center complex. Featuring ten meeting rooms and 9,136 sq ft of total meeting space, our Bakersfield, CA hotel is ideal for meetings, training, and conferences. Enjoy our hotel's high-tech guest rooms and suites featuring 32" HD TVs, high-speed wireless Internet access, luxurious bedding package and luxurious amenities. Concierge level rooms and suites offer an added level of sophistication unrivaled by other Bakersfield hotels. After work, guests can enjoy the endless options for shopping, dining, or simply enjoy an evening at our hotel's restaurant - The Nines, featuring fresh, American cuisine in a contemporary, upscale setting. Stay in the heart of it all at the luxuriously appointed Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center.

Make your reservation now!

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