Stakeholders launch ERM goals for oil and gas sector

PHOTO: aljazeera.com

Stakeholders in the oil and gas sector have adopted a comprehensive set of commitments and targets to enhance environmental risk management (ERM) in the sector.

The targets were adopted at a high-level policy dialogue organised in Lagos by the Institute for Oil, Gas, Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development (OGEES) Institute, Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD).

The workshop brought together leading environmental law experts, national oil and gas regulators, government officials, captains of industry, the academia, civil society and media to discuss new insights on how to enhance environmental risk management (ERM) in the Nigerian oil and gas sector.

It also provided an interactive platform for stakeholders to examine how to practically implement various aspects of the Environmental Guidelines and Standards for the Petroleum Industry in Nigeria (EGASPIN) released by the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in 2018.

Director of OGEES Institute, Prof. Damilola Olawuyi, said at the workshop: “There is no regulatory perfection anywhere in the world.

This is why oil and gas regulators worldwide continue to look for new ways to achieve efficient, safe, orderly and environmentally-responsible development of oil and gas resources over their entire life cycle.

“Today’s event allowed stakeholders to come together to develop formidable commitments and targets that can help advance the ERM principles and goals set out in EGASPIN 2018.

“All hands should now be on desk to ensure that we translate these important action plans to reality. There is a strong business case, in terms of cost, reputation and effectiveness for doing so. We all, as stakeholders in the oil and gas sector, will benefit from profitable exploration and commercialisation of resources, that also minimise negative environmental footprint of oil production activities.”

Meanwhile, a six-point ERM action plan that was adopted at the workshop focused on immediate five-year goals (2019-2024) to: accelerate environmental restoration and services in the Niger Delta through a dedicated financial mechanism; minimise flaring through intensive flare points shutdown, without compromising operations and practices with regard to safety; and accelerate community engagement through specialised training for local environmental champions, including women and youths.

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