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Client: Confidential
Location: UK

Balancing environmental practice with operational excellence.

Xodus Group specialists examine the likely environmental and socio-economic effects of a development in the UK.

Challenge

This was the first development of a major oil reservoir in an undeveloped inshore marine area with a number of key environmental and socio-economic sensitivities. The development included a number of fixed steel platforms, export oil and gas pipelines and onshore terminal modifications.

Our involvement ranged from early concept definition, Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) scoping, ESIA / Environmental Statements (ES) production through to ongoing support during installation, commissioning and operations. We facilitated the full involvement of the engineering and management teams in the ESIAs. A key element of this was the use of Environmental Impact Identification (ENVID) workshops and meetings, the outcome of which were used to set environmental challenges on the design.

Assignment scope

The ESIA involved detailed oil characterisation studies and comprehensive oil spill modelling for a range of scenarios. A risk assessment, based on the environmental sensitivities in the area (including international bird breeding areas) was undertaken in order to assess and identify appropriate oil spill contingency arrangements.

Other key areas of work performed by Xodus Group included:

  • Environmental sensitivity screening for a greenfield development in a sensitive marine and coastal environment
  • Environmental survey scoping and management, for offshore and onshore aspects of the development
  • Development of a consultation strategy and facilitation of stakeholder engagement
  • ENVID workshops with project teams throughout the lifecycle of the project
  • Environmental and social impact assessment
  • Oil spill risk assessment and modelling for all project phases and subsequent oil spill contingency planning
  • Quantitative comparative assessment of development concept options
  • Lessons learned review of previous similar developments in similar environment
  • Secondment of environmental advisor to project team to support environmental management and monitoring systems development, all consent and permit applications, awareness training for all project phases from installation, commissioning and through to operations
  • Ad-hoc supporting technical studies including Best Available Technique (BAT) assessments and engineering review studies throughout the project lifecycle to aid decision making and the reduction or removal of potential environmental impacts.

Results

  • Scientists assessed the available environmental data ensuring a robust and peer reviewed understanding of the baseline conditions in the area
  • Long-term working relationship with project and operations teams enabled smooth integration with the working team and focused and efficient advice to be provided
  • Continuity of service from ESIA through to operations allowed ongoing lessons learned and commitments to be carried through
  • Project delivered within a tight timescale through use of a core team for continuity and access to wider in-house resources when needed.