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Process Aspect Condition Impact

General Investigation : Aerial Survey Releases to air: Exhaust engines, GHG from N Noise affecting migrating
of land features e.g. satellite imagery, aircraft birds
aircrafts, etc.
Noise: Motor noise from aircraft Air emissions from aircraft
increasing air pollution to
local residents

Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
sea acidification)
Geophysical testing/investigations: Surface water: Depending on method, it can lead N Loss of land from clearing
Land based seismic to spillage or leakage if insufficient plugging or of land
management measures. E.g. Shot gun (dynamite)
Exposed land increase risk
Releases to air of surface runoff to surface
water bodies.
Land take and biodiversity impacts
Noise disturbance to fauna
Noise from machines

Visual Impact Contribution to global


emissions (climate change,
Traffic etc)

Seismicity

Mobilisation of drilling rig and Surface water: Surface runoff from spillages and N Diesel contamination to
equipment and people to the drill leakage from machines and vehicles. surface water bodies
location affecting water habitats.
Releases to air: Exhaust and vehicle emissions Additional air pollution
from vehicles to
Noise: Low level noise and disturbance to local surrounding area.
environment
Noise from vehicles
disturbing local habitats and
residents.

Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.
Site preparation (e.g. site clearing, Surface water : exposed land leading to pollution N Oil and sediment
accessibility, infrastructure, etc.) risk to surface runoff and erosion contaminated surface water
bodies affecting water
Releases to air: Dust from exposed land. Exhaust habitats by destroying
emissions from vehicles and generators delicate ecosystems and
changing diversity.
Land take: Land and vegetation clearing,
excavation Land clearance leading to
loss of vegetation and land
Visual impact: Industrialisation of area – altered for flora and fauna. Habitats
landscape destroyed.

Biodiversity impacts: Loss of habitat and surface Noise and traffic from
disturbances machines affecting wildlife
and local residents.
Noise: Vehicle, machinery, generators
intermittent or constant noise Contribution to global
Traffic: Increase in number of vehicles – burden emissions (climate change,
on local access road capacity etc.)
Well pad construction Groundwater and surface water contamination: A Any spillages from
Spillage and release onto surface and seepage machines and runoff from
into groundwater. construction materials into
surface water bodies and
Releases to air: GHG from exhaust, machinery, contaminating it. This can
generator and dust from construction material, lead to habitat and
exposed land biodiversity loss in the
immediate vicinity.
Land take, visual and Biodiversity impacts:
Removal of vegetation and loss of land to access Increased air pollution
road, construction area, storage area. affecting local area.
Industrialised area. Conventional oil and gas
drilling typically require 1 well per pad. Situated Land clearance leading to
in areas with high value or near residential areas. further habitat and
biodiversity loss as well as
Noise: Construction noise. Less noisy compared increased erosion of the
to drilling. land.

Contribution to global
Traffic: Increase traffic during construction emissions
period (shortterm)
Rig Installation Releases to air: Dust and GHG emissions from N Machines and vehicles
vehicles and machinery producing further air
pollution into the area
Noise: Construction noise
Short-term noise from
Traffic: Increased traffic over construction period moving vehicles and
(shortterm) machines affecting wildlife.

Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Drilling of vertical or deviated wells Groundwater contamination: Leakage of A Chemical spill, mud,
chemicals and seepage of oil and gas from cement, and leakages into
inadequate preparation and well blowouts. groundwater and
contaminating it
Surface water contamination risks: Surface run
off from surface spillage and leakage of Chemical spill, mud
chemicals, oil, contaminated sediments, drill cuttings and leakages into
muds and fluids, drill cuttings and well blowouts surface water.

Water resource depletion: Used for drilling and Large quantities of air
workers - Some pressure on local water source emissions released into the
Releases to air: Release of trapped gas, well air affecting flora growth,
blowout, VOCs, emissions from flaring, CO2 fauna and local residents’
emissions from generators and emissions from health.
construction equipment and vehicles.
Continuous noise over a
Biodiversity impacts: Risk to habitat and species period of time which will
due to disturbances to the environment, spillages, affect surrounding flora and
air emissions, miss-use of chemicals, constant fauna and local residents.
loud noise.
Visual impact disturbance
Noise: High noise level occurring continuously on local residents and
for a period of time. Impact very significant wildlife due to the strong
lights at night.
Traffic: Large number of vehicles potentially
loading large burden on local road infrastructure Increased traffic may
overload local access routes
capacity.

Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Drill cutting management Groundwater contamination: Seepage of A Leakage of chemicals,
chemicals and oil from untreated drill cuttings additives and contaminated
depending on disposal method. (oil) drill cuttings into
groundwater and
Surface water contamination risks: Surface run contaminating it
off from surface spillage and leakage of
chemicals, oil, contaminated sediments, untreated Chemical spill, mud
drill cuttings. cuttings and leakages into
surface water.
Releases to air: VOCs releases from
contaminated drill cutting storage and CO2 Increased traffic may
emissions from generators and emissions from overload local access routes
collection vehicles or treatment vehicles. capacity.

Traffic: Increased number of vehicles potentially Contribution to global


loading large burden on local road infrastructure emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Cementing and Casing Groundwater contamination: Poor cement job or A Cracks in the casing can
damage to casing will lead to leakage or seepage allow leakage of chemicals,
of chemicals or hydrocarbon impacted material. drill cuttings, oil impacted
soils into groundwater.
Surface water: Insufficient casing leading to
leakages of chemicals and hydrocarbon impacted If not careful during
material – surface runoff, interaction between cementing works or during
groundwater and surface water. use of chemicals, this can
lead to spills and runoff into
Water resource depletion: Quantities of water for surface water bodies.
cementing
Dust from construction
works can create immediate
Releases to air: Dust emissions from cementing, dust particles increasing air
machinery and generators pollution to flora and fauna
fecundity and local
residents’ health
Well completion Groundwater and surface water contamination: A Improper completion can
improper completion leading to leakage and contaminate surface water
seepage bodies leading to habitat
and biodiversity loss.
Releases to air: Flaring and venting of gas and
VOCs Flaring increases air
pollution affecting local
Land take and visual impact: Refer to drilling, a resident’s health
small proportion may be returned to prior use.
Contribution to global
Biodiversity impacts: refer to drilling emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Implementation of development plan Assumption: Scale of process increases N Further oil and sediment
- Increased site clearing - Extra contaminated surface water
access (i.e. roads, infrastructure) bodies affecting water
habitats by destroying
delicate ecosystems and
changing diversity.

Increased land clearance


leading to further loss of
vegetation and land for flora
and fauna. Habitats
destroyed.

Increased noise and traffic


from machines affecting
wildlife and local residents.
Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Well commissioning - Completed Groundwater and Surface water contamination: N Toxic chemical spill from
well hookup - Precommissioning - contamination from hydrostatic testing water hydrostatic testing can lead
Commissioning availability, chemical dosing, water disposal to permanent loss of plant
and habitat. Clean up may
Waste resource depletion: water used to conduct be expensive.
various testing such as hydrostatic testing
Further burden on local
Releases to air: Flaring from start up, water resource capacity.
maintenance or upset However will be short-term.
The water can be
replenished after a period of
time.

Release of air pollution


affecting local resident’s
health

Low and persistent noise


from machines may be an
irritant to nearby residents.

Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Development drilling (further Refer to exploration drilling. A Chemical spill, mud,
development, if required) - Small cement, and leakages into
drilling field - Large drilling field Cumulative impacts groundwater and
contaminating it
Accidental spillages
Chemical spill, mud
cuttings and leakages into
surface water.

Large quantities of air


emissions released into the
air affecting flora growth,
fauna and local residents’
health.

Continuous noise over a


period of time which will
affect surrounding flora and
fauna and local residents.

Visual impact disturbance


on local residents and
wildlife due to the strong
lights at night.

Increased traffic may


overload local access routes
capacity.

Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Crude Oil & Gas Processing - Surface water contamination: discharge of A Air pollution from escaping
Operation of plant and process produced water gas and flaring affecting
equipment and maintenance activities local residents’ health
Typical three phase separation: - Oil - Releases to air: Flaring of produced gas, Oil and other chemicals
Gas - Water emissions from machinery, equipment and runoff into surface water
generators. bodies can lead to loss of
biodiversity and habitat.
Land take and visual impact: Area required to
install treatment facility (taken into account Accidental spill can lead to
during Implementation of development plan) loss of vegetation, loss of
habitat and biodiversity.
Biodiversity: Accidental spill affecting vegetation
fecundity since pH and characteristics has Long term traffic affecting
changed. (taken into account during local access road capacity
Implementation of development plan) and noise to local residents.

Noise: Noise from machinery and generators Contribution to global


emissions (climate change,
Traffic: Increase traffic from vehicles collecting etc.)
“offtakes” on site
Site operations Major events such as major well blowouts – E Significant quantities of
catastrophic incidences that requires assistance chemical/oil/gas spill, mud
from third party resources: and cement leakages or
The likelihood of accidental spillages may spillages into groundwater
increase when the rig is situated in extreme and contaminating it
climates, has more severe process conditions
such as higher temperatures and pressures, larger Significant quantities of
and more complex facilities, inhospitable regimes chemical/oil/gas spill and
and greater financial and resource challenges as mud cuttings leakages and
competition increases. This is because there is spillages into surface water.
greater stress put on containment equipment and
lower margins for operator error during Significant quantities of air
production. emissions released into the
air affecting flora growth,
Groundwater and surface water contamination: fauna and local residents’
mass leakage of liquids health.
(hydrocarbon/chemical/mud/ cement) leading to
long term contamination Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
Releases to air: Accidental and sudden release of etc.)
hydrocarbon related substances damaging local
air quality and contributing to climate change.
Well Workover Surface water: Discharge of chemicals used N Oil and other chemicals
during well workovers runoff into surface water
bodies can lead to loss of
biodiversity and habitat
Waste Handling - Waste handling, Groundwater contamination: long term N Contaminated surface water
storage, collection and transport contamination of surface spills and leakages by waste can affect local
water habitat, flora and
Surface water : Accidental release fauna changing the
environment of the area.
Releases to air: emissions from waste treatment
e.g. incineration, TDUs, treatment plant, vehicle Increased air pollution into
exhaust and generators. the surrounding areas from
the waste treatment
Noise: Noise from treatment plant and generator. facilities.
A small portion from vehicle movements
The toxic nature of
Traffic: Movement of vehicles for disposal hazardous waste can destroy
flora and fauna. Loss of
biodiversity.

Noise from the treatment


plant is low but persistent
which can irritate local
residents or fauna.
Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
etc.)

Enhanced recovery (substance Releases to air: Emissions from equipment used N Emissions of pollutants
injection) – steam / miscible gas / to filter, pressurise and inject. cause adverse effects to
polymer injection health
Surface water contamination: chemicals leakage
or runoff from site storage / injection equipment. Noise affecting migrating
birds
Ground water contamination: injection chemicals
penetrating ground water reserves after injection. Contribution to global
emissions (climate change,
Land take: Extra equipment and chemical/water etc.)
storage
Contaminated surface water
Noise: injection equipment by waste can affect local
water habitat, flora and
Visual impact: injection equipment fauna changing the
environment of the area.
Traffic: Equipment and materials must be
brought to site. Waste must be removed
Well stimulation (low volume Surface water contamination: chemicals / N Emissions of pollutants
hydraulic fracturing proppant leakage or runoff from site storage / cause adverse effects to
injection equipment. health

Ground water contamination: fracturing Noise affecting migrating


chemicals / proppant penetrating ground water birds
reserves
Land take: Extra equipment and chemical/water Contribution to global
storage emissions (climate change,
etc.)
Noise: injection equipment
Water resource depletion
Visual impact: injection equipment can have adverse impacts on
local flora and fauna.
Traffic: Equipment and materials must be
brought to site. Flowback waste must be removed Seismicity can affect flora
and fauna.
Releases to air: Emissions from equipment used
to filter, pressurise and inject. Contaminated surface water
by waste can affect local
Water resource depletion: Significant quantities water habitat, flora and
of water required. fauna changing the
environment of the area.
Seismic: high pressures applied to the formation
Plugging of wells Removal of well Groundwater contamination: spillage and leakage N A short-term increase in
pads onsite. traffic leading to more air
pollution, dust emissions
Surface water: spillage and leakage onsite. from dry roads and
disturbance to local
Releases to air: odour and fugitive emissions residents and flora and
from chemical leaks and insufficient plugging. fauna.

Land take and visual impact: not all installations Contribution to global
can be removed to ensure plugged well is emissions (climate change,
permanently stable. etc.)

Biodiversity impacts: Impact to soil from


accidental spillages, vehicles, etc.
Noise and traffic: Increased construction noise
and traffic from vehicles and workers to
dismantle
Longterm well integrity and Groundwater contamination: sub-surface leaks of N Potential long-term
monitoring hydrocarbon fluids can occur, resulting in the pollution of waters that acts
penetration of ground waters. as both a habitat and
resource to many species.
Surface water: Liquid hydrocarbons may leak
from the mouth of the well bore. Long-term significant
contributions to climate
Releases to air: Methane and other hydrocarbon change
gases may escape to the atmosphere.

References
Amec Foster Wheeler Environment and Infrastructure UK Ltd. (2016). Study on the assessment and management of environmental impacts and risks
resulting from the exploration and production of hydrocarbons . Luxembourg: Publication Office of the European Union.