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Risk and Reward in the Frack Water Market

The rise of shale gas hydrofracking in North America has inspired a bumper crop of new water treatment startups vying to treat the highly challenging flowback water. Even as the number of players multiplies, regional natural gas prices have plummeted, ensuring that only well-positioned players will survive to play in the more robust international market. We size the market worldwide, projecting massive growth in shale fracking in attractive international markets even as U.S. growth declines. We also examine key startups in the space and the risks they must weather, including bans, uncertain market dynamics, and new technologies that might do away with hydrofracking as we know it altogether.

Table of Contents

  • Executive Summary
  • Landscape
      • Technology Unlocks a Huge Natural Resource
    • Current Practice Uses and Creates Large Amounts of Water
      • Challenges in Access and Water Treatment Drive Innovation
    • Shale Gas Transforms North American Energy
    • Vast International Potential
    • Environmental Issues Dominate the Headlines
    • Landscape Conclusions
  • Analysis
      • The Water Treatment Market Depends on Key Observations
    • Sizing the U.S. Market
      • Our Model Depends on Fundamental Assumptions about the Size and Behavior of the Shale Gas Industry
    • The U.S. Market Peaks in the Coming Decade
    • The World Market has Long-Term Potential
      • Exploiting the World Market will Require Penetration of China and Argentina
    • Significant Risks Face the Water Treatment Market
    • Examining Companies and Technologies
      • The Lux Innovation Grid Breaks Out Companies by Three Attributes and the Lux Take
    • Interpreting Company Positions within the Hydrocosm
    • The Companies
  • Outlook
  • About Lux Research
  • Endnotes
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