Spatio-temporal analysis of oil lake and oil-polluted surfaces from remote sensing data in one of the Libyan oil fields



Abdunaser K.


Sci Rep. 2020 Nov 19;10(1):20174. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-76992-5.


The study area, which is part of the Sirt sedimentary basin in the north-central part of Libya, is characterized by natural resources of important environmental value that need special attention as they are threatened by many human activities. The focus of this study was mainly on the production of high-resolution maps of oil-contaminated surfaces, and the series time maps of events resulting from oil pollution using multi temporal satellite data and validation of the results. Digital image processing techniques were used on satellite-based sensing, whether optical or radar data, which proved to be a cost-effective way to collect information on the volume of lake water, and to assess the depth and concentration of pollution in the study area rich in lakes taken from different periods (1972 to 2006). The area of the oil-contaminated lake, called produced water, was calculated from the 1972 Landsat MSS digital satellite imagery data and was about 1.8 km(2) and then increased to 10.7 km(2), during 2006 from Landsat digital image TM data. The size change in this area was due to the increase of the quantities of water production that continued to increase as the oil and gas fields reached maturity. The 2019 Landsat satellite imagery reveals a drastic shrinkage in the area of the lake attributed to the suspension of the produced water pumping as well as the cycle of evaporation that resulted to the water led to a limited volume of water remaining in the lake.

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Link/DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-76992-5