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Robots autonomously map underground mines 20 August 2019

Several research teams are competing in an event to develop robots capable of autonomously mapping and navigating mines. The first event in the multi-year competition, the DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) Subterranean Challenge, will see 11 teams assemble their robots and drones between August 15-22 in the research mine operated by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health in South Park Township, near Pittsburgh....

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UK plans Europe's first rubbish-to-jet fuel manufacturing facility 20 August 2019

British Airways and Royal Dutch Shell have submitted plans to build Europe’s first plant that converts household waste into jet fuel in the UK. The two companies will work with Velocys, a sustainable fuel specialist, on a site near Immingham on the the Humber estuary in North Lincolnshire....

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Russia may give pipeline operator control of all oil intake terminals after contamination scare 20 August 2019

Russia could transfer the operational responsibility for all oil intake terminals to state-owned pipeline company Transneft, according to a report on a government website relayed by the Reuters news agency, after a privately-owned terminal was blamed earlier this year for contaminating oil supplies....

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Hazardex Conference and Exhibition returns to Harrogate 20 August 2019

The 2020 Hazardex International Conference and Exhibition co located with PPTex will take place on February 26 and 27 at the Majestic Hotel in Harrogate, north-eastern England, its original home. For the last five years the event was located at Runcorn in Cheshire, but before that was run very successfully in the elegant North Yorkshire spa town....

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Offshore oil and gas rigs leak more greenhouse gas than expected 19 August 2019

A survey of offshore installations extracting oil and natural gas in the North Sea has revealed that far more methane is leaking from the installations than currently estimated by the UK government. The survey was conducted by a research team led by scientists from Princeton University....

Features

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Lessons and challenges in major hazards leadership: a personal perspective

Jo Nettleton is Deputy Director and Head of Radioactive Substances and Installations Regulation at the UK Environment Agency. In this article, based on her presentation at the Hazardex 2019 Conference, she looks at some of the high hazard incidents that have occurred during her wide-ranging career and reflects on the importance of leadership and collaboration in preventing these incidents. Jo also considers some of the main challenges for the future....

Case Studies

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Challenges and opportunities: Taking the Scotch whisky sector beyond compliance

Last autumn, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) launched its first Sector Plan for one of the biggest industries in Scotland: Whisky. This sector plan is not about implementation, because all but a small number of distilleries in Scotland fulfil their obligations, says Paul Guppy of DPS Group. This is about a new key phrase which is becoming increasingly important, moving beyond compliance....

Comment

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Taking the EU cyber security Directive seriously

The EU’s NIS Directive (Directive on security of network and information systems) is the first piece of EU-wide cyber security legislation. It aims to achieve a high common level of network and information system security across the EU’s critical infrastructure. The Directive was enacted into UK law on 10 May 2018, and fines of up to £17 million can be levied on companies found to be in contravention....

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