Oil and Gas Companies Are Turning Their Assets Into Smart Fields Posted on October 21, 2015April 20, 2017 by Tamara Bewley Many oil and gas companies are turning to data in an attempt to make their fields smarter and more efficient. By learning how to integrate and manage information about ways to improve production, the idea is that these fields will comply with ever-increasing regulations while enhancing their output and profitability. Smart fields are not exactly new. An IBM study about the value of smarter oil and gas fields cited information about the data-driven land from 2002. However, as technology evolves and more information is collected, the need to keep evolving and improving smart fields is a top priority for industry leaders. To gain a greater understanding of what value smart fields can have for oil and gas companies, it is important to know how businesses are utilizing their assets to make improvements. Working Smarter One of the most important reasons smart fields are needed is to deal with changing environmental regulations. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently mandated changes that will cut carbon emissions from the power sector by 30 percent compared to 2005 levels. However, the need for those resources continues to rise. Natural gas consumption has increased in the U.S. every year since 2009, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Smart fields can monitor what a company is producing, as well as evaluate the environmental output of its work. By installing monitors and other equipment within an oil and gas field, a business is able to collect data, which moving forward can measure the efficiency and proficiency of the work. It also can evaluate the different variables that play a role in oil and gas production in real time, Oil & Gas Production News stated. Additionally, by looking over information from both onshore and offshore facilities, a business can understand what changes need to be made to improve efficiency. Information Helps Production The data collected from oil and gas fields allows decision makers to plan ahead and be proactive. By forecasting the performance of various systems and facilities, a business can have a more accurate understanding of what its production will be. Smart fields allow managers to guage the field’s performance, thanks to in-depth reporting measures, improved forecasting and faster responses, the IBM study stated. When data software is running at its peak, and managers are able to have full insight to the value and production of the fields, asset optimization can be achieved. With more information available to be shared, machines can collaborate and workflows are improved. Assets working to their highest capabilities give an oil or gas company the ability to make smarter decisions to improve the production of its fields and forecast new initiatives accordingly. As the industry continues to evolve, smart fields will become even more important for oil and gas businesses. Staying on top of constantly changing government regulations and understanding how information can improve output will help businesses operate smarter and improve profits in both the short and long term.