We have seen a lot of changes in the approach to process safety and risk management over the last four decades, within the Oil and Gas (O&G) and chemical operating companies. Learnings from catastrophic incidents in the industry, led to evolution and enhancements to risk techniques as well as regulatory changes globally. Also, the last decade has also seen the evolution of the concept of sustainability. One of the key elements for a company in evaluating their sustainability performance is safety that ties into company’s goal to strive for operation excellence.
Irrespective of the concept of sustainability safety in operational excellence, the three facets always existed in the industry but with a limited scope and awareness. Investigations and awareness during recent major accident events have indicated that when assessing both the short term and long term consequences of such events, the impacts seen are economic, environment and social in nature. This affects the organisation’s governance processes. A robust proactive risk management exercise when initiated during the concept of facility, and then carried out effectively and continuously until the demolition and decommissioning of the facility, renders success in the excellence program.
Various international operators have has driven forward in this direction with the use of the safety case regime. The US onshore and offshore regulations also call for governance of safety programs. The safety program would be considered to be a sustainable program; if it covers the entire process safety management lifecycle for the facility using a risk based approach, rather than a prescriptive approach. The various techniques involved would be an array of qualitative and quantitative studies such as HAZID, ENVID, ALARP, Bow-ties, HAZOP, JHA, JSA, FTA, ETA and QRAs. Each of these studies brings about a plethora of actions. The actions need to be addressed using a risk based approach rather than a cost based approach. Companies develop various leading and lagging Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) as an integral part of safety programs, to measure this sustainable safety while ensuring operational excellence.
This paper elaborates on the sustainable and sequential application of process safety methods in a risk based manner for the entire lifecycle of the facilities. That assures longevity for the facilities and thus operational excellence. The case studies discussed in this paper, will highlight the ways to attain success in this area.
See more of this Group/Topical: Global Congress on Process Safety