The bulk of Chevron Australia's field operations are carried out in hot areas of Western Australia (WA). The climate, the work environment and the nature of tasks being carried out mean that heat stress management is a critical element in the Company's health protection efforts. Heat illness produces outcomes that vary from mild levels of fatigue and discomfort through to life threatening conditions such as heat stroke. Additionally, it is well recognised that excessive deep body temperature and dehydration are connected with a decrement in both physical and mental performance, and hot conditions may thereby give rise to accidents and significant productivity loss.
Many of the logistical, earthworks and construction tasks now underway in advance of the Gorgon Project's operational phase are carried out in the open, with an accompanying high risk of UV exposure. As such, skin cancer protection is an important additional consideration.
What sets this work apart from the work of others is:
? The project was applied in a challenging, construction work environment characterised by constant change and many newcomers
? There was a focus on connecting well established scientific understanding with day-to-day practice in the field
? The project centred on an integrated approach to dealing with the twin issues of heat stress and UV protection
? Several new training packages, checklists, surveys and field trials were introduced
? There was a close connection with external stakeholders, including the Cancer Council Western Australia (CCWA), WorkSafe WA and the Commission for Occupational Safety and Health
The project involved the development and communication of expectations, procedures and processes to support leading practice management of heat stress and UV exposure.
The paper describes a comprehensive approach to both heat management and sun protection. It should have broad applicability to Oil and Gas Industry operations in warmer parts of the world.
In Western Australia, Chevron leads the development of the Gorgon and Wheatstone natural gas projects, two of Australia's largest-ever resource projects. In addition, the Company manages an equal one-sixth interest in the North West Shelf Venture, is a participant in the proposed Browse LNG Development and operates Australia's largest onshore oilfield on the Barrow Island and Thevenard Island oilfields. It is expected that first gas for the Gorgon Project will be in 2014, while that for Wheatstone will be in 2016. The construction workforce for each project will peak at approximately 5,000 workers.
During the Front End Engineering Design (FEED) stage of a project; scope, cost and schedule are locked down, the plans for construction are prepared and the licences, permits and access agreements obtained. Health, Environment and Safety (HES) deliverables include: assurance that the selected design options meet corporate and regulatory standards; input to ensure that the design is safe and environmentally responsible; the execution of baseline surveys and impact assessments to obtain required permits; the development of HES exhibits; and the review of tender documentation and contractor HES management plans. These activities, although often critical to project success are typically not tracked to completion alongside other project milestones.
This paper describes how during FEED, the Wheatstone Project built a specific HES Schedule from which were extracted a number of key milestones that were assigned a percentage contribution to the Final Investment Decision (FID). Any milestones interfacing with other delivery teams were integrated into the overall project plan with dependencies and links established. Progress for HES was then tracked alongside the progress of the rest of the project and a monthly dashboard produced as the prime communication vehicle for reporting performance.
This innovative approach put HES on the same footing as all the other project delivery teams and enabled HES conversations to take place in exactly the same manner as for engineering, commercial and technical disciplines. The integration of HES into project planning and progress measurement sharpened discipline around the delivery of milestones and the management attention afforded to them. The content of this paper and approach described can be used for future major capital projects throughout the oil and gas industry.
This paper presents a methodology for a systematic, robust and conservative ecological risk assessment for estimating environmental consequences and associated risk from ambient air concentrations of atmospheric pollutants and air toxics (also referred to as criteria pollutants and hazardous atmospheric pollutants in the United States legislation respectively), as arising from industrial activities. The paper details the main steps of the risk assessment process and makes a contribution in deriving conservative and safe Reference Concentrations (RfC) such as No Observed Adverse Effect Level (NOAEL) and Lowest Observed Adverse Effect Level (LOAEL) for fauna in their natural habitat, using published scientific dose-response toxicological studies with laboratory animals. It then uses these derived RfCs to determine step changes in consequence levels, from incidental to major, in order to complete the risk assessment. A similar approach is used to assess impacts on the marine environment. This methodology is repeatable and robust and can be applied as a screening level environmental risk assessment to establish conformance to legally postulated levels of acceptable environmental consequences, where available, or acceptable levels of environmental risk, associated with air quality.
Project Background and Setting
The Gorgon Project, operated by Chevron Australia Pty Ltd on behalf of the Gorgon Joint Venture Participants, will develop the Gorgon and Jansz-Io gas-condensate fields, located offshore the north-west corner of Western Australia (WA) (see Figure 1). The approved development will include subsea gathering systems and pipelines delivering the gas to a 15 million tonne per annum (MTPA) liquefied natural gas (LNG) Gas Treatment Plant (GTP) located on the east coast of Barrow Island (BWI), which is a Class A nature reserve, lying some 60 km north of the Australian mainland. The Gorgon Project is an unique LNG Project in that it will also encompass the largest industrial scale acid gas injection undertaking in the world to date whereby some 4.2 MTPA of CO2 and other acid gas components (i.e. residual methane, (CH4), volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and hydrogen sulphide (H2S) removed from the natural gas, will be liquefied and injected via three injection centres in the Dupuy Formation below BWI in the Operations Phase of the Project.
In May 2011 Shell announced its commitment to the development of a Floating Liquefied Natural Gas (FLNG) concept by taking the Financial Investment Decision on the Prelude FLNG Project. Prelude is located in Australian offshore waters, approximately 475 km north-northeast of Broome and 825 km west of Darwin, and will be Shell's and possibly the world's first FLNG development. FLNG offers a number of environmental advantages over traditional onshore LNG developments. This paper describes some of these and the associated environmental permitting/approval conditions for the project.
Technology is now available for real-time Industrial Hygiene monitoring of activities in locations such as offshore facilities, with viewing of the data remotely. The use of this technology can result in a more dynamic approach to hazard control, where the data being collected can be interpreted and control barriers altered in line with the results of monitoring. The data review can take place onshore by Industrial Hygiene specialists without the need to fly offshore. Encrypted data is transmitted via the internet for viewing onshore. No work on this application of real-time monitoring has been published previously. This innovative technology is being trailed by Shell in Australia in what is believed to be a world first.
Real-time personal monitoring equipment is available for monitoring of compounds such as VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds), benzene, heat stress, radiation and dust. The application of this type of monitoring is extremely useful in a dynamic environment such as offshore exploration drilling or during commissioning of new offshore facilities. In these environments there is limited opportunity for specialist resources such as Industrial Hygienists to be present offshore as operationally, manning levels are at their maximum during these periods.
The use of real-time monitoring with remote review by Industrial Hygiene specialist makes it possible to monitor unique, uncommon, or unplanned maintenance tasks that would otherwise be very difficult to capture.
This paper will provide results and conclusions from the trial of this technology during the refit of an LNG Tanker in Singapore and will describe how this technology may be implemented in remote facilities such as Shell's Prelude FLNG facility. The paper will also discuss likely advances in this technology over the next few years.
In late 2011 the Queensland State Government of Australia declared the Cooper Creek Basin in South West Queensland to be a Wild River Area under the Wild River Act 2005. The Wild River Area covers a significant proportion of Santos' current tenements and future development interests in the area.
The Wild Rivers Declaration is a highly prescriptive regulatory regime that sets out significant restrictions which would detrimentally impact on existing operations and future oil and gas development opportunities, including emerging coal seam and shale gas prospects in the proposed declaration area. It includes general prohibitions on certain activities across extensive areas of channel country and the imposition of setbacks for activities in proximity to watercourses.
The issue first arose in late 2010 when the Queensland Government indicated its intent to declare the Cooper Creek Basin as a Wild River through its issue of a Declaration Proposal. During the 12 month consultation period that followed, Santos engaged with the Queensland Government regulators and Ministers to assist the Government to make a Wild Rivers Declaration that achieves a balance between protecting the natural values of the Cooper Creek and allowing the continuation of the sustainable development of the petroleum resources within the Cooper and Eromanga Basins.
The paper will provide insight into Santos' experience in taking a lead role in responding to the significant new legislative regime proposed by Government. Key insights include the need for industry tobe proactive and take a role in educating the Government on the industry's operations andthe changes required to ensure compliance with the new regulatory requirements. It will also discuss broadlythe challenges associated with the changing regulatory environment including the role that politics can play and observes that we should continue to expect a ‘Wild' ride whenparticipating in thelegislative developmentprocess.
The significance of the Declaration is that the restrictions for petroleum activities imposed in the Cooper Creek Basin Wild Rivers Declaration may be imposed upon all Wild Rivers areas in Queensland. In addition, other Australian state governments are watching the implementation of Wild Rivers' legislation in Queensland and are considering the need for similar regulatory regimes in their jurisdictions.
Feng, Aichun (Faculty of Engineering and the Environment, University of Southampton) | Chen, Zhimin (Faculty of Engineering and the Environment, University of Southampton) | Xing, Jing Tang (Faculty of Engineering and the Environment, University of Southampton) | You, Yunxiang (School of Naval Architecture, Ocean and Civil Engineering, Shanghai Jiaotong University)