Water use

Our target is to use water resources rationally with the aim to preserve them. KPO controls the use of clean water at the Company by undertaking a set of measures on conservation of water resources and re-use of treated water, wherever possible.

In 2019, the total water consumption in the Company amounted to 527,853 m3, of which 434,397 m3 was the technical water and 93,456 m3 was the potable water.

In 2019, the volume of water used by KPO for production needs was 3.1% higher than in 2018. The domestic needs’ water consumption was slightly less compared to 2018.

KPO water consumption, 2017-2019

The main source of water supply for production needs is the Karachaganak field is a holding pond No.1 at the Konchubai gully, for household and domestic needs it is a Zharsuatwater intake. The source of water supply for domestic and production needs of the Bolshoi Chagan OPS is the Serebryakovskiy water intake, for Atyrau Terminal OPS is the Kigach water intake.
Water intake from other sources is ensured through contracts with water suppliers. According to the Special Water Use Permit with the validity period until 22.09.2020 for water intake from the Konchubai gully for industrial needs, the annual intake limit is 595,047 m3.

The potable water is used exclusively for domestic needs of the KPO facilities. At the Bolshoi Chagan OPS the potable water is supplied by the RSE KazVodKhoz WQO Branch and, due to absence of alternative sources of water supply, is used only to replenish the fire tanks for fire safety purposes.

Table below shows KPO’s water consumption broken down by sources.

KPO water consumption in 2017-2019 by sources, m3




Water quality






Zharsuat water intake facility (domestic needs)


groundwater, potable

89,034 92,888 91,851


Serebryakovskiy water intake facility

OPS Bolshoi Chagan

groundwater, potable

1,656 1,476 1,605

Domestic needs

    931 980 924

Production needs

    725 496 681


Konchubai gully water intake facility (production needs)


surface water, technical

445,591 417,232 431,616


Kigach water intake facility

Atyrau OPS

surface water, technical

2,183 3,545 2,781

Domestic needs

    1,054 933 777

Production needs

    1,129 2,612 2,004

Reuse of treated wastewater

In order to reduce fresh water intake for such works and operations like drilling, making of drilling muds, watering of planted trees, dust suppression on roads and constructed sites, KPO uses treated domestic, industrial wastewater and storm runoffs. The wastewater is reused at the Company facilities in line with the 2018-2022 Operating Procedure.

The volume of treated technical water reused by KPO in 2018 amounted to 4.4 % of the technical water consumed from the Konchubai gully. Table below shows the KPO activities that utilize treated wastewater.

Reuse of treated wastewater in 2017-2019, m3





The total volume of re-used treated wastewater, including:




For drilling and drilling mud preparation




Irrigation, hydro tests, and replenishing of fire tanks




Dust suppression




Discharge of treated wastewater

KPO uses special man-made facilities for collecting treated domestic and industrial wastewater and storm runoffs. These facilities exclude a possibility of contaminants soaking into the soil and reaching groundwater as well as allow collecting the treated wastewater for their re-use for technical needs, thereby reducing the fresh water intake.

The table below shows the amount of contaminants discharged with wastewater in the period of 2016-2018.

KPO wastewater collection facilities

Formation water, produced with crude hydrocarbons, and process wastewater are treated and injected into the deep-lying formations of the KOGCF industrial wastewater burial sites 1 and 2. Wastewater injection is the international practice of disposing wastewater, avoiding the formation of salt-containing waste on the surface during the treatment. Due to the reliable water shutoff and soil properties, which are ideal for the injection of wastewater, the migration of wastewater into upper aquifers is ruled out.

Wastewater generated as a result of the KPO economic and production activities is not discharged into the natural water bodies.

Table below shows the KPO 2016-2018 discharge volumes indicating wastewater types and receiving facilities.

Total discharge volume and contaminants by wastewater types and receiving facility, 2017-2019, m3

Receiving facility Type of wastewater 2017 2018 2019
Discharge volumes, m3 Amount of
contaminants, tonnes
Discharge volumes, m3 Amount of
contaminants, tonnes
Discharge volumes, m3 Amount of
contaminants, tonnes
Holding ponds Treated domestic wastewater 63,935 40.94 68,752 38.8 68,763 35.72
Subsurface Waste Water Disposal Polygons Industrial wastewater, process and associated formation wastewater 582,400 32,891.2 663,706 42,239.72 628,819 39,645.09
Terrain of Bolshoi Chagan and Atyrau Terminal OPSs Rainfall and snow melt wastewater 2,862 0.92 2,694 1.51 3,546 2.05
Total discharge 649,197 32,933.06 735,152 42,280.03 701,128 39,682.86

In 2019, the volume of discharged wastewater decreased by 4.6% as compared to 2018. In 2019, the volume of injected industrial wastewater decreased by 5.3% as compared to 2018. The decrease in industrial wastewater in 2019 was due to the facilities shutdown during the turnaround.

KPO monitors the content of contaminants in generated and treated wastewater at its facilities, such as:

In 2019, the discharge of contaminants amounted to 39,682.86 tonnes, which was 6.1 times higher compared to 2018 — 42,280.03 tonnes. Of them, 35,732.12 tonnes were discharged within the MPD limits, while the excess discharge amounted to 3,950.74 tonnes.

The excess discharge of contaminants results from the exceeded MPD concentration on nitrite nitrogen and nitrate nitrogen contained in domestic wastewater discharged into the holding ponds as well as exceeded annual MPD limits of suspended solids, oil products, sulphides, iron, copper, aluminium, zinc, and chlorides in wastewater discharged into the Subsurface Waste Water Disposal Polygon No.1 due to increase in their volumes. As provided by the RoQ Tax Legislation, the Company effected necessary payments for the rated and exceeded discharges of contaminants.

In general, wastewater injection has no effect on the environmental components such as soil, flora and fauna, as wastewater is injected into effectively isolated deep horizons with high-mineralized groundwater that is not used for domestic and potable, balneological, process needs, irrigation or livestock farming.