Hear Hulett Evans with SOS Environmental explain how spills can be cleaned up and the environment restored, with the proper use of technology. To learn more abut SOS Environmental click here.
Mark: Hey, folks let’s learn something new about the oil and gas industry.
Today, we’re here with Hulett and he has a fascinating story to tell you. Good morning, Hulett.
Hulett: Glad to meet you, Mark. Thank you for your time.
Mark: Yeah. So, let’s just kind of jump right into it. You started how many years ago out on the rig?
Hulett: 1969, it’s been a few years.
Mark: And what was rigs like in 1969? It’s nowhere they are as safe as they are?
Hulett: It’s a little different world, it’s a little different world, but it’s pretty luxurious nowadays compared to what it was a few years ago.
Mark: So, you started on a rig on 1969 and then you ended up working yourself through the industry and what are you doing now?
Hulett: Well, I’m in the environmental remediation business. We do a lot of work in hydrocarbon remediation and saltwater remediation. That’s kind of our unique nature of the business.
Mark: Yeah. And something that you do is different. I know there’s environmental companies out there, they’re all over the board. You’re actually a service company that does environmental work and there’s a difference there?
Hulett: Yeah, it is. We kind of evolved at this point. Our business, our unique nature has been to fix the job and what SOS stood for originally was Solutions On Site. We were a consulting company designed to go solve the problem on site, not to study there, but to go fix it and to do whatever might be the most economical way to do it at the time.
Mark: Right. So, you do the usual stuff; the testing, the consulting, everything but your goal, you and your team’s goal is when you walk out there when you all finished, the problem is gone?
Hulett: Correct, that’s exactly right.
Mark: Yeah. And so, so many operators out there you need to pay attention to this because what happens is a lot of people understand this, you have some liability involve no matter how you move the stuff, what – how do you dispose of, you have some liability. So instead of bringing in consultants out there, you probably want to bring somebody who can actually fix it and this is a bit rare in the environmental space in the oil and gas industry.
Now, let’s talk a little bit about your saltwater remediation because that’s huge right now.
Hulett: Yeah. Saltwater is probably the biggest environmental problem in the world, not just in oil and gas, just from irrigation, from saline water, it is really a global issue, but it certainly an issue in the oil and gas business.
Mark: Yeah. And so, I know this for a fact, anytime there’s a saltwater spill, most of the time it’s solved by people basically hauling off the contaminated soil and that’s expensive and once again you still have liability. You don’t do that?
Hulett: No, digging hole might cost a million dollars an acre and there’s still always a better solution. I mean it’s possible if it’s a little bitty site, maybe that’s okay to do, maybe makes sense, but rarely is that the right thing to do cost-wise.
Mark: And so, what you’ll do, you are able to actually treat the soil without removing the soil?
Hulett: That’s correct. What we do is not magic, these are not particularly new technology, it’s understood that you can leach out the salts and you can collect them and dispose of the salts from the sodium and the chloride that can be done. There are different chemicals to do that. Historically, we will use gypsum, the problem with gypsum is it take – might take fifty years to work. So we have a liquid amendment that you can put on the soil, leaches the salt out and you can remediate the site in a few days or if it was an old historical site, it may take a year, so it depends on how bad it is, but certainly can do that without digging it up.
Mark: Yeah. And because you’re not digging it up, it’s actually much more cost effective?
Hulett: Well, it’s a hell a lot more cost effective. You know you might be – if it’s a million dollars an acre to dig it up, you might fix it for $10,000 or $50,000 an acre for your own site, plus you haven’t destroyed your land, you haven’t put a product on the road, and you do not have the potential liability hauling dirt down the road, plus it’s done. Usually the landowner likes it better, the operator likes it better.
Mark: Yeah. And in today’s low crude environment, every penny you can save is penny you need to keep in your pocket and here’s a great way to save it with somebody who’s been in the industry since the late 60’s. So, if somebody wanted to learn more about what you and you company does, where should they go?
Hulett: We have a little website, SOS Environmental. It’s not fancy, but it’s sufficient.
Mark: Yeah. Folks, we’ll stick a link in the show notes, so you don’t need to be writing notes. Well, Hulett, thank you so much for your time today.
Hulett: I appreciate it. Thank you, Mark.
Mark: Yeah. Folks, I hope this helped, we will see you next time.