Contemporary Issues of Climate Change on Oil and Gas Industry Operations
The reality of climate change as an aspect of broader global and environmental change attributable to either natural or anthropogenic cause is becoming more evident. Equally, energy, chiefly oil and gas is not only a major climate change inducer via greenhouse gas emissions anymore, but also a victim of the impacts therein. As such, this paper examines the impact of recorded changes in climatic variables on oil and gas operations categorized into upstream, midstream and downstream operations representing exploration and production, transportation, along with processing and distribution respectively. Identified changes in weather events primarily driven by general climate change having significant impact on oil and gas operations and infrastructure include increasing temperature, increasing flooding, storm surges, sea level rise, coastal erosion, intense winds and waves, drought/water shortage and subsidence/landslides/mudslides and they all pose tremendous risk to onshore and offshore (shallow and deep water) operations and installations. Several adaptation measures are currently being implemented some of which are already yielding positive results. Adaptation measures are being complemented with mitigation strategies as long-term solutions. Sadly, most developing oil producing countries are still way behind in adopting various existing adaptation measures and implementing mitigative strategies due to prevalent low capacity.
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