Leader in anti-pollution drive

August 18, 2005, 01:45 CEST

Statoil is among the oil companies with the lowest oil spills and emissions of environmentally-harmful gases to the air per unit produced, according to new industry statistics.

But the group is nevertheless continuing its efforts to curb these sources of pollution with undiminished vigour.

Figures from the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers (OGP) show that Statoil has maintained its position as one of the world’s cleanest oil companies.

“We’ve worked systematically and purposefully for a long time to reduce discharges and emissions,” says Tove Rørhuus, vice president for health, safety and the environment in Exploration & Production Norway. “That’s reflected in the new figures.”

Carbon dioxide emissions are rising on a world basis, but have remained constant at Statoil despite growing oil and gas production.

Per unit produced, the volume of this greenhouse gas released by the group in 2004 was only a third of the average for the petroleum industry.

“Good design of our plants and efficient operation mean that we’re managing to keep these emissions down,” explains Ms Rørhuus.

She is particularly pleased that Statoil has sharply reduced its emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC), which are now below the global average for the first time.

“It’s very gratifying to see the latest figures. Because we do more offshore loading than the rest of the industry, our VOC emissions have been above those of many other companies.

“Over the past four years, however, we’ve halved the amount we release of these fumes by recovering oil vapour on our shuttle tankers.”

The volume of oil discharged by Statoil through acute spills is just 2.3 per cent of the average quantity for the industry.

“So we can claim to be well placed by comparison with the other oil companies. All the same, our goal is to eliminate all emissions and discharges.