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The Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station focuses on applied research in national security, energy, health care, infrastructure, and manufacturing. The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) and the US Department of Energy (DOE) have entered into a cooperative agreement with Texas A&M's Engineering Experiment Station to support the ongoing operation and maintenance of the Ocean Energy Safety Institute (OESI). "The Ocean Energy Safety Institute is an important example of how cooperative efforts between academia, government, industry, and other nongovernmental organizations can be used to improve both worker safety and environmental sustainability," said Laura Daniel-Davis, US Department of the Interior's principal deputy assistant secretary for land and minerals management. "The OESI will support critical improvements for all offshore energy activities, including renewable and traditional energy, as well as support new offshore energy technology development." "We are excited about this collaboration with the Department of the Interior and the opportunity this will provide for cooperative research between academia, government, and industry," said Jennifer Wilcox, the DOE's acting assistant secretary of fossil energy.
Jahromi, Hamed Ghasvari (Vanmok Leak Detection Technologies Inc.) | Ekram, Fatemeh (Vanmok Leak Detection Technologies Inc.) | Ali, Waqar (Vanmok Leak Detection Technologies Inc.) | Roxas, Michael (Vanmok Leak Detection Technologies Inc.) | Mokamati, Satya (Vanmok Leak Detection Technologies Inc.)
Abstract Leaks may occur at any time and location in a liquid transmission pipeline. One of the major complexities in the leak detection process arises when the leak happens in a pipeline in the presence of phase change. To study such cases, A set of experiments are conducted on a 374-meter (1227-ft) pipe to examine the performance of CPM-based Leak-Detection algorithms. Different intensities of slack from the bubbly flow to the complete cavitating zone are managed to be present before performing a variety of leak tests in terms of size and location. The values of flow and pressure are measured at different locations along the length of the pipeline and used as the initial and boundary conditions or constraint points and fed to the algorithms. To examine the influence of the CPM solver on the leak detection process, two CPM-based leak detection algorithms are considered. The first algorithm performs the leak detection based on a CPM model, which does not model the hydraulics involving phase change. The second algorithm takes advantage of a CPM solver with a precise model to take phase change (cavitation) and the presence of vaporous phase (slack) into account. The ability and quality of these leak detection algorithms are examined against the experiments. The results show the importance of the phase change modeling ability of the CPM to avoid false positives and detect the leaks of different types, which would have otherwise been masked under operating conditions that involve phase change.
On 20 April 2010, a kick and blowout in the Gulf of Mexico resulted in a series of explosions that killed 11 people and started an environmental disaster. Now, 11 years later, government and industry continue the drive to improve safety. The disaster at Macondo Prospect resulted in the largest environmental catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico; the US government estimates that 4.9 million bbl of oil spilled into the Gulf. Investigations after the disaster led to several safety initiatives from the industry and the identification of areas of improvement by government. To commemorate the date, the BBC has gathered some of those who were closest to the epicenter--those who worked on the rig or who worked so hard to staunch the flood of oil and clean up the disaster afterward--for an online program.
Abstract The Deepwater Horizon accident is one of the major environmental disasters in the history of the United States. This accident occurred in 2010, when the Deepwater Horizon mobile offshore drilling unit exploded, while the rig's crew was conducting the drilling work of the exploratory well Macondo deep under the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Environmental damages included more than four million barrels of oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico, and economic losses total tens of billions of dollars. The accident brought into question the effectiveness of the regulatory regime for preventing accidents, and protecting the marine environment from oil and gas operations, and prompted regulatory reforms. Ten years after the Deepwater Horizon accident, this article analyzes the implementation of Safety and Environmental Management Systems (SEMS) as one of the main regulatory reforms introduced in the United States after the accident. The analysis uses the theory of regulation which takes into account both state and non-state actors involved in regulation, and therefore, the shift from regulation to governance. The study includes regulations issued after the Deepwater Horizon accident, particularly, SEMS rules I and II, and reports conducted by the National Academy of Sciences, the National Commission on the BP Oil Spill, the Center for Offshore Safety, the Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE). The article reveals that though offshore oil and gas operators in the U.S. federal waters have adopted SEMS, as a mechanism of self-regulation, there is not clarity on how SEMS have been implemented in practice towards achieving its goal of reducing risks. The BSEE, as the public regulator has the task of providing a complete analysis on the results of the three audits to SEMS conducted by the operators and third parties from 2013 to 2019. This article argues that the assessment of SEMS audits should be complemented with leading and lagging indicators in the industry in order to identify how SEMS have influenced safety behavior beyond regulatory compliance. BSEE has the challenge of providing this assessment and making transparency a cornerstone of SEMS regulations. In this way, the lessons of the DHW accident may be internalized by all actors in the offshore oil and gas industry.
A massive oil spill off the coast of Israel is being called the worst ecological disasters in the Mediterranean country's history. The cause and full extent of the damage is still unknown, but Israeli authorities are investigating. Several tankers are under suspicion. The spill was discovered when patches of tar began washing up on more than 100 miles of Israel's coastline this past week. According to the Times of Israel, some 70 tons of tar and contaminated material have been scraped off and collected along the country's shores since cleanup efforts began.
Biodegradation occurs when bacteria, fungi, or other organism or biological process chemically dissolves materials. The process can be beneficial or detrimental within the industry depending on the circumstances. For instance, biodegradation via bacteria can aid in the cleanup of oil spills. The process can take more or less time depending on the amount of type and amount of bacteria, the reservoir or ecosystem in which the bacteria are found, and the amount of oxygen present. In reservoirs cooler than approximately 80 C, oil biodegredation is common and detrimental.
In the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the oil and gas industry, regulators, and other stakeholders recognized the need for increased collaboration and data sharing to augment their ability to better identify safety risks and address them before an accident occurs. The SafeOCS program is one such collaboration between industry and government. It is a voluntary confidential reporting program that collects and analyzes data to advance safety in oil and gas operations on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) established the program with input from industry and then entered into an agreement with the US Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) to develop, implement, and operate the program. As a principal statistical agency, BTS has considerable data-collection-and-analysis expertise with near-miss reporting systems for other industries and the statutory authority to protect the confidentiality of the reported information and the reporter's identify.