The oil industry has been one of the sectors most affected by the different economic crises over time. This, due to the negative consequence of the low prices of crude oil and its derivatives (gasoline, naphtha, LPG and diesel).
Therefore several oil companies have reduced or suspended operations. In this scenario, the companies that remain in the market must take charge of new challenges:
- The environmental sustainability strategy is an issue that is becoming increasingly important within the oil sector.
- The latest changes have resulted in a scenario where companies have greater pressure to make decisions about the environmental impact caused by their operation.
What does it mean to be environmentally sustainable?
Sustainability is the ability to maintain something. In the context of the oil industry , sustainability refers to the ability of companies to maintain a balance between their activities and the environment.
That is, companies must ensure that their activities have a limited impact on the natural resources they extract.
In addition, they must also ensure that their activities do not create any additional pollution in the environment.
Industry environmental challenges
The concept of sustainability does not apply only to the present moment. You must take into account the environmental impact of all activities, regardless of when they are carried out.
And environmental challenges will be present throughout the process, from the extraction of crude oil and its derivatives to the marketing of the products.
Oil and its derivatives are obtained from the exploitation of hydrocarbons that exist in the subsoil. The growing demand for energy and the limited availability of renewable sources have led to an increase in the use of fossil fuels.
The ecosystems in which these hydrocarbons are found are threatened by extraction. The industry is also responsible for emissions of pollutants such as CO2, SOx, NOx or CO and volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
The oil and gas industry and its environmental commitments
The oil and gas industry is committed to being environmentally sustainable and has demonstrated this in a number of ways. The industry is aware of the need to continually improve its environmental performance.
The objective is to reduce the impact of the company’s activities on the environment. This can be achieved through technological innovation, operational improvement and the application of new ideas.
5 keys to achieve a more sustainable oil industry
- Achieving energy efficiency: The oil industry has always been characterized by a high demand for energy. Therefore, energy efficiency must be a priority. In this way, we will be able to reduce CO2 and VOC emissions.
- Reduce fugitive emissions: Emissions that are not captured during oilfield operations can be released into the atmosphere. They are called fugitive emissions. Fugitive emissions of CO, SOx, and VOCs can affect air quality and human health.
- Improve operational management: The operational management of production , It is a way to avoid significant emissions of pollutants.
- Use of new technologies: New technologies are being developed to obtain better results in terms of environmental performance. These technologies are being used in industry and are expected to reduce emissions and increase productivity.
- Applying new ideas: New ideas for using natural resources in new ways or reusing materials that would otherwise go to waste can reduce dependence on natural resources.