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  • Enbridge to pay $176 million in Michigan oil spill settlement

    21 July 2016

    Canadian pipeline operator Enbridge Energy will pay $176 million to settle the July 2010 pipeline leak that polluted nearly 40 miles of the Kalamazoo River in Michigan under an agreement announced on July 19 with the US Department of Justice and Environmental Protection Agency. A smaller spill near Romeoville, Illinois, that took place two months earlier will cost a further $1 million....

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  • Seven missing after river cruise ship explodes and sinks in Peru

    20 July 2016

    A luxury cruise ship exploded and sank in the Amazon River on July 16 at Iquitos in Peru and a number of crew and others are missing, feared dead. According to a company statement, the 24-passenger Aqua Amazon “suffered a very serious accident… that caused an explosion and resulted in the sinking of the ship.” ...

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  • New Commission study shows high regulatory costs for EU chemical industry

    19 July 2016

    A new Commission study shows that the cost of implementing major regulations for the European chemical industry doubled between 2004 and 2014. Europe’s regulatory framework for chemicals, along with industry’s own efforts, plays an essential role in ensuring the protection of human health and the environment. In response, European chemical industry group Cefic called for a greater focus on competitiveness....

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  • Date set for first North Sea oil strike in a generation

    19 July 2016

    A 24-hour strike of Wood Group oil and gas maintenance workers could disrupt operations at several Royal Dutch Shell platforms in the North Sea where they are employed, labour union Unite said on July 18. The strike action, scheduled for July 26, will be the first by UK North Sea workers in thirty years. ...

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  • Kinder Morgan must defend fatal Mexican gas pipeline explosion court case

    19 July 2016

    A gas leak from a pipeline at Reynosa in Mexico owned by the Kinder Morgan group caused an explosion and fireball that killed 22 workers and injured dozens more on September 18, 2012. On July 13, a Federal Court ruled that only Kinder Morgan and not any of the other companies originally sued by plaintiffs’ groups should face the charges of gross negligence and negligence....

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BP puts final cost of Deepwater Horizon liabilities at $61.6 billion 15 July 2016

BP announced on July 14 that following significant progress in resolving outstanding claims arising from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon accident and oil spill, it can now reliably estimate all of its remaining material liabilities in connection with the incident. Taking into account this estimate together with other positive tax adjustments, BP expects to take an after-tax non-operating charge of around $2.5 billion in its second quarter 2016 results. ...

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Nexen to shed 350 jobs following January Alberta oilsands plant explosion 14 July 2016

Nexen Energy of Canada said on July 12 it would cut 350 jobs this year after deciding not to repair its Long Lake oil-sands upgrader in northern Alberta following a fatal explosion in January. The facility, which processes bitumen into light synthetic crude oil, cannot be feasibly repaired in the short term, company executives told reporters. Workers will lose their jobs at Long Lake and at the Calgary headquarters. ...

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National Grid says UK could import 93% of its gas by 2040 12 July 2016

The UK could rely on other countries for 93% of its gas supplies by 2040 if there is weak economic growth and not enough money available to support domestic gas production, National Grid said on July 5. This import forecast is a part of the British grid operator's "Slow Progression" scenario, one of four potential scenarios in its "UK Future Energy Scenarios"....

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Ineos director says Brexit will not impact London HQ move 12 July 2016

Brexit will not affect plans for chemicals giant Ineos to return group headquarters to the UK, according to one of the company’s senior directors. Speaking to Platts, Tom Crotty said the group was relocating a number of offices to the UK from Switzerland and would likely have a 50-50 mix between the two countries when the operation was complete....

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UK rocket motor company fined for safety failings 12 July 2016

An engineering company in Worcestershire, has been fined more than £380,000 for safety failings. Worcester Crown Court heard how an employee of Roxel (Rocket Motor) Limited was inspecting a rocket motor for damages received during the manufacturing process. The UK Health and Safety Executive reported that the emplyee used a fibre optic light to illuminate a conduit on the ‘charge’ of the motor....

Features

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Safety Intelligence and Chronic Unease

What makes a good manager for industrial safety? Psychologists who study hazard management have long been interested in this question. In this article for Hazardex, Rhona Flin, Emeritus Professor of Applied Psychology at the University of Aberdeen, examines some new approaches to this perennial puzzle, particularly in relation to senior managers.  ...

Case Studies

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Drone operations in hazardous areas

A recent report by consultancy group PwC estimates that the use of drones could lead to disruption in $125bn worth of traditional industries. Drones are expected to replace those humans who have previously climbed ladders or dangled from ropes to assess everything from industrial inspection to insurance assessment. Now, a French company is offering ATEX-certified drones for use in potentially explosive environments....

Comment

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UK surveys confirm likely negative effect of Brexit over next six months

Following the EU referendum, UK manufacturers’ organisation EEF conducted a survey of companies to assess the impact of the decision to leave the EU which found a potentially negative impact on orders over the next six months. This trend was confirmed in the purchasing managers’ index (PMI) compiled by Markit, which saw its composite (services and manufacturing) index fall to an 87-month low....

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