During the 2004 and 2005 Hurricane Season, one of the lesser known results, but potentially more environmentally threatening, were damaged, downed production platforms and the associated production.
Downed production platforms have multiple sources of potential releases. Combine multiple downed and damaged production platforms with the need to intervene and secure production, and the risk of an oil release is increased. One question that needs to be answered: What are the related risks to the many different scenarios that could possibly occur during impending, multiple, simultaneous operations?
One of the goals BP established was to not have oil impact the shoreline or nearby economically significant marine facilities. Both shoreline and economically sensitive areas are within 12 miles or less of the downed production platforms.
To accomplish the no impact goal, a three phased approach was used to create a supplemental response capability.
Phase 1: A risk matrix was created to address the multiple potential sources and impacts while evaluating the potential for environmental and economic impact.
Phase 2: Utilizing the existing response plan, which met or exceeded regulatory compliance, evaluated the effective ability to respond to the potential risk in the varied prevailing weather conditions and provide the best opportunity for preventing impact to environmental and economic priorities.
Phase 3: Developed a fiscally responsible plan to address the short-comings of the existing plan and secured resources based on the evaluation that would provide the best opportunity to meet the BP goals.
The paper will provide a discussion of the technical processes used during each phase and present practical means for assessing multiple risks and scenarios. This will include a unique application of a safety risk matrix evaluation. The second area of emphases will expand on the process of using the risk matrix results for resource planning.
The principles employed to prepare the response capability are well developed and historically substantiated, but they have been combined in a practical, technical and unique way to planning for environmental response in a real world risk.