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Crowcroft P.,Environmental Resources Management Ltd
Society of Petroleum Engineers - SPE Annual Caspian Technical Conference and Exhibition, CTCE 2015 | Year: 2015

Oil production from land-based license blocks remains a major focus for operators, and managing environmental liability and taking care of the wider environment associated with such assets is increasingly important. Whether at the entry stage, with acquisition decisions to make, or at the operational and exit stages of a project lifecycle, an operator must have the basic information to assess and manage the financial liabilities which may be posed by impacts on soil, surface water and groundwater. Defining the environmental baseline condition of the land within concession areas at both the start and completion of exploitation and production is essential to: • Being able to define any incremental pollution caused by the operation of the field over its lifetime; • Articulate and manage the environmental liability exposure such impacts represents to operators; and • Aid operators in restoring the land to an acceptable condition in compliance with their permitting and operational licenses and in accordance with sustainable principles to facilitate an orderly exit from the license block. Comprising anything from exploration sites, storage pits, lay-down areas, well-heads, pipelines, flow stations, manifolds, valves, processing plants and waste disposal areas, the assets in question can be hugely variable but each can pose potential environmental risks in their own right. Set this against a background of environmentally diverse land patterns and usages, and the challenge of characterizing any pollution which occurs can be substantial. In addition, it is important to decide on what level of mitigation might ultimately be appropriate - just cleaning up land to remove all incremental impacts may be unsustainable, and a more cost-effective approach would better focus on those aspects of pollution which pose an actual risk of causing harm to human health or the environment, rather than adopting a blanket approach, irrespective of risk. Copyright 2015, Society of Petroleum Engineers.

Fletcher P.,Environmental Resources Management Ltd
Society of Petroleum Engineers - SPE Middle East Health, Safety, Security, and Environment Conf. and Exhibition 2012, MEHSSE - Sustaining World Energy Through an Integrated HSSE and Business Approach | Year: 2012

Environmental impact assessments prepared for proposed oil and gas developments frequently dismiss the potential impacts arising from the wastes generated by a project as being insignificant. They typically indicate that wastes will be managed at suitable approved or licensed facilities - often overlooking the fact that in many countries there simply aren't any 'suitable' waste management facilities for the range of wastes that will be generated - at least none that can meet recognised international standards for health and safety or environmental protection. This paper discusses the challenges that oil and gas companies face when operating in countries that do not have an established waste management infrastructure and how they should fulfil their obligations to ensure that their wastes are managed responsibly. Practical logistical options for managing wastes generated by exploration and production operations are discussed including pre-treatment of waste, developing in-house waste treatment facilities, working with existing waste contractors to help raise standards to an acceptable level and export of waste. Each of these options has its advantages and disadvantages and each has its place in ensuring that a company's wastes are managed safely, effectively and in accordance with good international practice. Copyright 2012, Society of Petroleum Engineers.

Smith P.,Aquatonics Ltd | Snook D.,ASEDA | Muscutt A.,Environmental Resources Management Ltd | Smith A.,Aquatonics Ltd
Water and Environment Journal | Year: 2010

The impacts of a spill of approximately 9800 L of diesel on a small stream and the River Ray (near Swindon, Wiltshire, UK) were examined using kick-net sampling of freshwater macroinvertebrate families at impacted and reference sites. Initial impacts (10 days after the spill) 50 m downstream of the spill were severe, with only 9% survival of individuals (excluding oligochaete worms) and 56% survival of invertebrate families. The percentage survival of macroinvertebrates increased progressing downstream from the spill, with no detectable impacts beyond approximately 4 km downstream. The crustacean families Asellidae and Gammaridae were particularly sensitive to the diesel spill. The recovery of the macroinvertebrate community was assessed 13.5 months after the spill. At this time, recovery was almost complete, with only minor impacts at the sites closest to the spill. The use of live laboratory sorting of samples from impacted sites provided essential information on the impacts of the diesel spill. © 2009 The Authors. Water and Environment Journal © 2009 CIWEM.

Burnley S.,Open University Milton Keynes | Phillips R.,Welsh Assembly Government | Coleman T.,Environmental Resources Management Ltd
International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment | Year: 2012

Purpose: The aim of this research was to determine the optimum way of recovering energy from the biodegradable fractions of municipal waste. A part-life cycle study was carried out on the following wastes: paper, food waste, garden waste, wood, non-recyclable mixed municipal waste and refuse-derived fuel. The energy recovery processes considered were incineration, gasification, combustion in dedicated plant, anaerobic digestion and combustion in a cement kiln. Methods: The life cycle assessment (LCA) was carried out using WRATE, an LCA tool designed specifically for waste management studies. Additional information on waste composition, waste collection and the performance of the energy recovery processes was obtained from a number of UK-based sources. The results take account of the energy displaced by the waste to energy processes and also the benefits obtained by the associated recycling of digestates, metals and aggregates as appropriate. Results and discussion: For all the waste types considered the maximum benefits in terms of climate change and non-renewable resource depletion would be achieved by using the waste in a cement kiln as a substitute fuel for coal. When considering the impacts in terms of human toxicity, aquatic ecotoxicity, acidification and eutrophication, direct combustion with energy recovery was the best option. The results were found to be highly sensitive to the efficiency of the energy recovery process and the conventional fuel displaced by the recovered energy. Conclusions and recommendations: This study has demonstrated that LCA can be used to determine the benefits and burdens associated with recovering energy from municipal waste fractions. However, the findings were restricted by the lack of reliable data on the performance of waste gasification and anaerobic digestion systems and on the burdens arising from collecting the wastes. It is recommended that further work is carried out to address these data gaps. © 2012 Springer-Verlag.

Werner S.R.,ExxonMobil | Spurgeon J.P.G.,Environmental Resources Management Ltd | Isaksen G.H.,ExxonMobil | Smith J.P.,ExxonMobil | And 4 more authors.
Marine Policy | Year: 2014

An ecosystem services (ES) approach to managing marine and coastal resources has increasingly emerged as a core requirement of ecosystem-based management (EBM). However, little practical guidance exists to help structure and implement such an approach. This paper outlines the linkages between ecosystems, ES and EBM in a practical framework that could be applied to marine environmental management. Using the northwestern, deepwater Gulf of Mexico as a case study, a three-stage approach was devised: (1) prioritizing relevant ES according to perceived financial and societal value and level of stress, (2) assessing the effectiveness of a wide range of indicators of ES health, and (3) ranking indicators to identify those whose monitoring would be most effective in tracking ES health. The first stage of this approach identified food provision, recreational fishing, and the non-use ethical value derived from the presence of iconic species as the highest-priority ES in the case study region. The second and third stages suggested four indicators as having the highest priority for supporting key ES: (1) levels of selected chemical compounds in key species of fish, (2) marine sound, (3) concentration of chlorophyll- a as a proxy for phytoplankton, and (4) economic and ecological values added by artificial structures. Results of this study will be helpful in prioritizing the allocation of resources for marine environmental monitoring. The approach described here will also be applicable, with appropriate adaptations, to ES analysis in other environmental settings. © 2014.

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