This essay is based on information about Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and its activities. This is a state owned company, which belongs to the United Arab Emirates. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company operates for more than 40 years (since 1971) (About ADNOC). The government provided the company with an access to the national reserves of gas and oil. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company has different subsidiaries. They are involved in gas and oil exploration and manufacturing, distribution and transportation, work with petrochemicals, chemicals and refined production (About ADNOC). Nowadays ADNOC is among the leading world oil and gas companies. It should be noted that the company performs development of onshore gas fields together with offshore fields. Much effort is directed on exploration and manufacturing of natural gas, which is delivered to water and electrical utilities, chemical and petrochemical factories. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company has branching downstream and upstream network, because its activities include the whole cycle of exploration (such subsidiaries as Abu Dhabi Company for Onshore Oil Operations, Abu Dhabi Marine Operating Company and Zakum Development Company), production, transportation (Abu Dhabi National Tanker Company and National Gas Shipping Company), distribution (ADNOC distribution and Al Dhafra Petroleum Operations Company Ltd.), and related services.

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company Mission

The company has the following mission: exploration, development, and production of hydrocarbons “at maximum efficiency and optimum cost with minimum impact on the environment and people” (About ADNOC) on behalf of shareholders. The main strategy of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company is reflected in creation and successful implementation of environmentally friendly technologies into exploration and manufacturing. It is reflected in the following: capture of environmentally harmful emissions, development and implementation of environmentally friendly and energy efficient manufacturing technologies, etc.

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This project is directed on description and analysis of company’s OM decisions concerning ecological protection. Much attention is paid to prevention of oil spills, decreasing of harmful emissions, reduction of flaring, effective and efficient use of water and energy resources for exploration, manufacturing and transportation of company’s products. The majority of these activities is developed, implemented, and controlled by Crisis and Emergency Division of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. The main mission of this division is development and implementation of actions directed on protection of the “personnel, UAE environment infrastructure and resources by providing effective crisis and emergency response services to ADNOC Group companies throughout their entire operations” (ADNOC leads by example).

Health, Safety and Environment (HSE) Division is also highly involved in development and implementation of company’s strategies directed on protection of human life, decreasing negative impact on the environment, and ensuring safety of maintained operations. This division performs verification of compliance of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company and its numerous subsidiaries with company’s health safety and environmental standards and policies. Close cooperation with national and international agencies and committees involved in protection of environment and people’s health provides continuous improvement of company’s strategies and approval that these strategies correspond to the national and international standards. Main activities of HSE Division of ADNOC are the following: development of standards and policies for HSE protection; close cooperation with company’s departments and subsidiaries; moving amendments to the working process for increasing its safety; observation of strict fulfilment of above mentioned policies and strategies; coordination of efforts of different division of the company for minimization of negative impact on the environment and danger to and loss of life, and timely and effective response on any issues.

Topic Statement

Oil and gas manufacturing industry is closely connected with numerous ecological issues, like emission of harmful substances into the atmosphere, water pollution, oil spills, endangering of human life, etc. That is why ADNOC Group and other companies, which perform similar activities, develop special procedures for minimization of negative effect from company’s operations on people and environment. However, sometimes these procedures are inefficient and uncompleted. So, they cannot lead to the considerable improvement of used manufacturing technologies and minimization of the above mentioned harmful effect. The research problem of this essay is determination of existing ecological protecting methodologies developed and implemented by Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, their analysis, assessment of obtained outcomes and progress, and provision of recommendations for their improvement.

This research and stated research problem is highly important in current time because development and growth of oil and gas manufacturing industry represents a great danger for the whole country and region. Even small mistakes and negligence in manufacturing process can lead to catastrophe and cause enormous harm to the nature, people, and animals, including fish and birds. Also, additional attention should be paid on the fact that this industry cause permanent negative effect in the environment via harmful substances emitted into the atmosphere, like carbon dioxide and sulphur dioxide. So, this research will be also directed on investigation, analysis, and evaluation of existing procedures directed on decreasing of emitted harmful substances during the processes of gas and oil production.

Methodology

In this essay both quantitative and qualitative analyses for description and assessment of current procedures directed on solving of various ecological issues, which can raise or are already raised by gas and oil manufacturing performed by Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, will be used. Quantitative analysis will be based on collecting data and measuring variables obtained from the official site of the company and annual reports provided by ADNOC. Qualitative research will be based on the analysis and evaluation of current and future company’s strategies directed on decreasing negative impact on the environment. Combination of both methodologies will provide more effective and efficient analysis and more reasonable outcomes. Any strategies and visions developed on the basis of analysis of company’s activities will be supported by figures. Also, the use of both methodologies will minimize the possibility of any mistakes and improper outcomes.

Results

Research shows that the strategy and activities of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company are directed on minimization of negative environmental impact of company’s operations and on contribution of lasting environmental benefits. One of the foremost priorities of the company is development and thorough implementation of the so called HSE policy (that is written out of health, safety and environment). Among the central principles of company’s operation are prevention of pollution and thorough control. It should be mentioned that Abu Dhabi National Oil Company directed its activities “towards environmental protection rather than on remedial efforts alone” (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013). Abu Dhabi National Oil Company develops numerous plans of actions of timely and effective response on any incidents. Risk management procedures help to determine all possible risks and implement effective procedures for minimization of their occurrences through management of an acceptable level of these risks.

The main goal of the safety management program is facilitation of safe to the environment and people’s life oil and gas manufacturing programs. Also, there are some less ambitious but not less relevant goals, like prevention of loss of containment of materials for minimization of negative impact on the ecology and people’s health. This is performed via a thorough examination and clear understanding of hazardous characteristics of these materials, identification and studying of a range of different failure events, which may happen during the gas and oil manufacturing processes, thorough assessment of consequences of these events; performance of analysis of all possible process risks. All these procedures are extremely necessary for prevention of negative events and minimization of negative influence of oil and gas manufacturing.

The company develops and implements numerous strategies for effective and efficient management and safeguarding the integrity of operating systems and processes in accordance with international safety procedures and standards. These activities are supported by improvement of design and construction of operational facilities. As it was mentioned above, the majority of these activities are developed, managed, and observed by two divisions of the company: Crisis and Emergency Division and HSE Division. Descriptions of different strategies developed and implemented under observance of these divisions will be detailed below.

Management of Occupation Safety Risks

The first activity described in this essay that is devoted to solving existing issues in oil and gas manufacturing industry is directed on the management of occupation safety risks. This activity is developed by HSE Division mentioned above. All types of workers are involved in the process because all of them work in the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. The procedures are performed mostly by people involved in the field development, manufacturing, and transportation and are observed by their managers and representatives of HSE. Below is presented a flow chart that shows the procedure of occupation safety management performed by HSE Division.

HSE management safety

There are numerous kinds of risks, which are inherent in the manufacturing process of this industry and cannot be totally avoded, only minimized. That is why proper assessment of risks, performance of thorough control over implemented measures, which is based on strict hierarchy of these measures, form the background of the company’s management occupation safety.
Much attention is paid to the engagement of workers of different levels in the company’s cocupational safety activities. All subsidiaries of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company have special systems of encouragement of workers to perform participation in identification and timely reporting about any conditions, which may endanger safety of other people and environment. They bear responsibility for effective and efficient management of these conditions. These strategies lead to significant minimization of fatal accident rate (FAR) in the company, which reflects the amount of fatalities per one hundred million working hours. The FAR of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company is by 27 per cent lower than in other companies of oil and gas manufacturing industry (1.55 compared to 2.12) (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013).

Crisis Management and Emergency Response

Crisis management and emergency response are performed by Crisis and Emergency Division. This division performs identification, management, and effective and timely respond on emergencies and crisis conditions. These steps enable the soonest return of company’s operation to the normal state and elimination of any negative impact on the environment and people’s lives. All types of workers are involved in crisis management and emergency response procedures, because all of them can notice and perform a significant work for minimization of negative effect of any issues.
Crisis and Emergency Division provides stand-by readiness and ability of timely, effective and efficient response on any oil spills. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company has 2 Oil Spill Response Centers, also called OSRCs, near Abu Dhabi. These centers are situated in Ruwais and Mussafah. Also, the company has several response ships, which provide quick and effective response to any of oil spills. Vessels are located near Das Islands and Zirlu Islands (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013). Additionally, Crisis and Emergency Division of the company developed special Offshore Mass Evacuation Plan, also known as OMEP, for increasing effectiveness of crisis management of mass evacuation.

Crisis management of the company is formed on a three level response structure. This structure is based on the strict hierarchy, communication between employees, accountability, and leadership. It should be noted that any division of any subsidiary provides an immediate response and support to other subsidiaries, which is an event for other national and international oil manufacturing companies. Below is presented a flow chart of a three level response structure.

A three level response structure developed by Crisis and Emergency Division of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

The effectiveness of response on any crisis situations depends greatly on the knowledge and skills of common workers. That is why the division constantly organizes numerous trainings. For example, the UK Nautical Institute developed a special set of in-house training programs for Abu Dhabi National Oil Company. This set corresponds to the numerous requirements of International Maritime Organization. Also, employees of the company participate in different national and international training programs organized by the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA). These participations are organized by Crisis and Emergency Division for improvement of workers’ skills and knowledge of crisis management and emergency response.

Management of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company clearly understands that oil and gas manufacturing is an industry, which provides high emission of harmful substances. That is why it develops and implements numerous procedures, including greenhouse gas management, directed towards minimization of this effect through using innovative emission-reducing technologies. The main extent of harmful emissions is caused by combustion of fuel. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company invested $ 48 million into modern technologies that will lead to reduction of harmful substances emission, decrease of flaring, and improvement of energy efficiency. These initiatives lead to considerable results. For example, flaring profile of the company decreased on about 75 per cent compared to 1995 (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013).

Flaring trend of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company from 1995 till 2013

Also, these initiatives lead to increase of a total volume of vented carbonate on about 53 per cent only for one year (from 490,989 cubic meters in 2012 to 919,590 cubic meters in 2013). Flaring across company’s operations increased on about three per cent (it comprised 61 million of cubic feet per day in 2013). Workers involved in oil and gas manufacturing process and in transportation took part in management of greenhouse emission processes.

Moreover, nowadays Abu Dhabi National Oil Company started implementation of Share Flare Gas Recovery Project. This project is based on the “establishment a flare gas recovery system at the Shah Field that utilizes spiking gas compressions to avoid flaring approximately 5 million standard cubic feet per day of associated gas to the atmosphere” (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013). This gas will be spiked to a new factory located in Asab. This project will lead to a decrease of carbon emission on more than 100,000 CER (1 carbon credit per 1 ton decreasing of CO2 equivalent) (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013). Additionally, building of a new factory will provide more than 5,000 new working places.

Application of Energy Efficient Technologies

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company applies numerous energy efficiency technologies and initiatives in cycles of oil and gas manufacturing. They are based on increasing an employees’ awareness concerning necessity, the ways of improvement energy efficiency, optimization of company’s performance, and the use of green building concepts. These energy management systems and initiatives were stipulated by development and implementation of a new Code of Practice. These initiatives led to saving of more than 16 million of GJ in the previous year. About 30 per cent of energy used by the company was generated from renewable resources. Application of these technologies is performed by workers directly engaged in manufacturing process and employees of plants and factories.

Special kind of diesel – Green Diesel – is among the most energy efficient projects. It was developed by Abu Dhabi National Oil Company and Takker. This fuel contains less than 10 ppm of sulphur. Replacement of existing fuels by this fuel will provide a considerable decrease of carbon dioxide, carbon oxide, and nitrogen dioxide emission (about 20 per cent for CO2, about 50 per cent for CO, and about 25 per cent for NO2) (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013).

Management of Company’s Environment Performance

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company provides management of company’s environment performance through monitoring of air emissions, water management, and management of waste waters. Management of company’s environment performance is provided by managers of manufacturing units and ship managers. Special Air Quality Monitoring System was developed for determination of the amount of harmful substances emitted into the atmosphere. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company has eight monitoring centers, which perform laboratory investigations and analyze the quality of air in locations of company’s maintenance. According to the information obtained from these monitoring centers, the amount of nitrogen dioxide emissions decreased by about 2 per cent, the amount of sulphur dioxide emissions decreased by 13 per cent, and the amount of VOC emissions decreased by about 5 per cent in the previous year.

The company also performs effective and efficient water management and management of waste waters, as it uses water during oil and gas manufacturing processes. More than ten millions of cubic meters of water were reused in manufacturing. This is about 6 per cent of total used water. The main part of water (about 99 per cent) is withdrawn from the sea, undergoes special treatment on the plants of Bu Hasa and Asab, and then discharged back to the sea. Abu Dhabi National Oil Company discharged 4,102 million of cubic meters of cooling water, and 9.6 millions of sewage water in the previous year.

Implementation of Special Guidelines

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company successfully implements and adopts the OGP, also known as Association of Oil and Gas Procedures Guidelines. These procedures help to collect information about any cause or any possibility of causing ecological issues and caused harm to people. For example, the frequency of the lost time injuries in the company in 2013 was by about ten per cent lower than the frequency of lost time injuries in the preceding year (Sustainable development through partnership and clean technologies, 2013). It should be noted that the whole oil and gas manufacturing industry has an indicator of about 0.45 injures per million. So, the company’s lost time injury frequency is by about 5 times lower than in other companies involved in the same business. This figure reflects high effectiveness and efficiency of performed actions and strategies. Implementation of special guidelines is observed by managers of all structures and performed by employees of all units of the company.

Oil and gas manufacturing industry is very high developing and constantly improving. Big national and international corporations increase their facilities for manufacturing more and more production. This leads to high revenues, thousands of new working places, and prosperity of countries. In the same time, such a development creates numerous issues to the environment and endangers people’s lives (not only those of employees involved in manufacturing or transportation, but also people, who live near the sea and in the rural areas) by air and water pollution and by high possibility of catastrophes. This essay provides a description of one of the biggest oil and gas manufacturing companies, its strategies and procedures directed on the decrease of the above mentioned threats possibilities. The company thoroughly develops and implements these strategies and performs a constant observation of its fulfilment. The management of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company used the so called Six Sigma theory for analysis of effectiveness and efficiency of implemented actions. As it is noted above, the majority of projects is not only described, but their efficiency is evaluated through using statistical modeling and calculation of possibilities of happening of numerous dangerous issues (for example, oils spills).
Management of the company is directed on increasing stability of manufacturing processes and minimization of possibility of any breaches of rules. This is obtained by constant trainings of personnel, participation in national and international studies, development and implementation of specialized guidelines and codes of conduct; personal responsibility of each worker for timely informing about any dangerous event and effective reacting in emergency situations. All levels of company’s employees are engaged in safety management and emergency participation procedures. Top level management of the company bears the highest responsibility for any harm caused to the environment and people, because these particular people should provide an understanding of the necessity of the above mentioned strategies and observe a thorough fulfillment of these strategies.

Moreover, according to official declarations, different subsidiaries of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company will provide help and support to each other and to other companies in emergency cases. Strict control and hierarchy are among the basic principles of the company because they form a background of quick correspondence to any arising issue, timely notification of problems, and consolidation of employees. Almost all of the above mentioned strategies provide measurable outcomes, which can be analyzed by specialists and improved in the future. Moreover, the majority of practices and plans are developed on the background of statistical information obtained from international institutions, governmental agencies, and other oil and gas manufacturing companies. It should be noted that Abu Dhabi National Oil Company closely cooperates with internationally recognized maritime universities and agencies (for example, with the UK Nautical Institute) for development plans and implementation of procedures, which will correspond to international standards of safety (for example, standards developed by International Maritime Organization).

Recommendation

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company spends millions of dollars on the development of safety plans and implementation of modern technologies in the oil and gas manufacturing processes. However, the company pays insufficient attention to decreasing water pollution from the process of oil and gas transportation by sea. As it was mentioned above, part of manufacturing processes is performed offshore by participation of numerous supporting vessels and huge tankers in transportation. All of these vessels produce and discharge into the sea the oily waters (bilge and sludge), which cause considerable harm to flora and fauna. According to official information obtained from Global Environment Outlook, “Petroleum hydrocarbons from refineries, petrochemical industries, oil terminals, oil spills from ships, pipeline accidents, disposal at sea of oil-contaminated ballast water and dirty bilge, and sludge and slop oil… some 1.2 million barrels of oil are spilled into the Persian Gulf annually” (Marine and coastal areas, 2000). Moreover, more than 20 per cent of all of sewage water discharged into the Persian Gulf is untreated. Special maritime pollution prevention division can be created in Abu Dhabi National Oil Company for development of strategies for solving this issue. Below is presented a flow chart of proposed activities of this division.

Proposed activities of maritime pollution prevention division of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

This division can perform closer cooperation with international and national organizations and companies, develop special rectification and emergency plans, perform more detailed investigations of methodologies of decreasing the harm caused by discharging of bilge and sludge waters from ships into the Persian Gulf.

Among the first initiatives studied by maritime pollution prevention division can be bioremediation, which consists the following: “an indigenous microbial consortium was developed by assemble of four species of bacteria, isolated from various oil contaminated sites of India, which could biodegrade different fractions of total petroleum hydrocarbon (TPH) of the oily waste to environment friendly end products” (Mandal et al., 2012). The amount of THP decreased up to fifty per cent within the time period from two to twelve months (Mandal et al., 2012).

This essay provides a short description of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company and its missions and strategies. This company develops and implements procedures directed on solving main industrial problems of oil and gas manufacturing – provision of safety to the environment and people’s lives and timely and effective correspondence in emergency situations. These implementations are performed by the following divisions of the company: Crisis and Emergency Division and HSE Division. Some of the strategies were described and analyzed in the essay.

These strategies are the following:

  • management of occupation safety risks,
  • crisis management and emergency response,
  • management of greenhouse gas emission,
  • application of energy efficient technologies,
  • management of company’s environment performance,
  • and implementation of special guidelines.

This research is visualized in several diagrams and flow charts. Also, some propositions as to creation of special maritime pollution prevention division aiming to minimize harmful effect of bilge and sludge waters discharged from ships engaged in manufacturing are made for improvement of company’s performance.

Conclusion

On the basis of international oil and gas manufacturing company Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, this essay provides a description of some initiatives directed on solving main industrial issues, such as providing safety to the environment and people’s lives. The company closely cooperates with national and international organizations for development and implementation of effective and efficient strategies for solving these issues. Millions of dollars are spend on modern technologies for decreasing emission of harmful substances into water and atmosphere; using energy effective equipment, and coordinated and timely response on emergency situations. However, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company can pay more attention to the development of procedures for decreasing maritime pollution from bilge and sludge waters discharged from ships involved in the oil and gas manufacturing.

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