Energy forum to highlight role of industry in driving sustainable environmental action

Regional environmental experts to address delegates at series of dedicated responsible social and environmental sessions as industry looks to boost its sustainability credentials

The role of the energy sector in supporting a sustainable environmental agenda in the Gulf region will be a major focus at the upcoming 9th Annual HSE Forum in Energy, which takes place at the Doha Grand Hyatt in Qatar from 30th September to 2nd October 2013.

Day two of the three-day event will feature a dedicated Responsible Social & Environmental Performance stream with a series of four panel discussions covering a gamut of topics including industry environmental collaboration, managing climate change and effective hazardous waste management.

“Environmental issues have long been, and will remain, a crucial focus for the region’s energy sector as the world wakes up and takes on board the consequences of inaction. Commitment to these issues and the investment needed to achieve sustainable outcomes will be a hot ticket item at this year’s forum event,” remarked Zenab Husain, Conference Director, the 9th Annual HSE Forum in Energy, organised by Fleming Gulf.

Kaushik Deb, Head of Environment for RasGas, will present a case study on the company’s coral relocation programme for its high profile Barzan Gas Project, which, when its first train is launched in 2014 will be one of the largest integrated gas processing plants in the world.

As part of efforts to preserve the marine life in its project waters, RasGas relocated around 1,600 corals living along the proposed pipeline route prior to construction, working in consultation with Qatar’s Ministry of Environment, the body responsible for overseeing the protection of marine heritage and biodiversity.

Deb will also address environmental sector challenges, touching on the need for regional resource development as well as improving stakeholder engagement to drive sustained activity initiated by the oil and gas industry.

“For the Barzan Gas coral relocation project we had to bring in external contractors as the complex nature of this exercise called for specific expertise, but the issue of developing local resources is currently being addressed and capacity building is in progress, supported at the highest levels of government,” he said.

The Ministry of Environment is looking to us for guidance and project expertise in executing this kind of project off Qatari waters, and it is important for the oil and gas community to continue to show how it is working to mitigate its environmental footprint through sustainable initiatives. If you look at Maersk’s whale shark project and Dolphin Energy’s Ras Laffan turtle habitat protection programme from Shell, these are just a couple of active examples of positive environmental handling,” he added.

Deb believes that increased dialogue and involvement between government, the corporate world, local communities and international organisations is key to driving the environmental sustainability agenda in the region, and the common thread that unites stakeholders under the Qatar National Vision 2030.

Other day two speakers include Brian Sullivan, IPIECA’s Executive Director, who will discuss enabling improvement in social and environmental performance in the oil and gas industry; the UNEP’s Regional Climate Change Co-ordinator, Abdul-Majeid Haddad, on managing risk and opportunity; and Dr Mohammad Aref, Weatherford QHSE Manager UAED, speaking about effective hazardous waste management.

Held under the patronage of HE Dr. Mohammed Bin Saleh Al-Sada, Minister of Energy & Industry and Chairman & Managing Director of Qatar Petroleum, the two-day conference and exhibition, which includes a series of workshops on day three, is designed to help support initiatives to reduce workplace fatalities and maintain employee wellbeing in the region’s energy sector.

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