This year’s ILTA (International Liquid Terminals Association) Annual Conference in Houston brought midstream industry professionals together to learn about the latest and greatest in oil and gas trends, technologies, and solutions.
The conference presents a great opportunity to build on our existing relationships and form new ones—and this year, we were lucky enough to hear about the latest challenges and innovations straight from the oil and gas professionals who visited our booth, as well as from leading presenters who focused on environmental challenges and opportunities, health and safety, security and emergency response, and international considerations. Between our conversations with other attendees and insights from the presenters, there was no shortage of excitement and focus on what comes next for oil and gas.
Here are our top four takeaways from this year’s conference:
SPCC: Top Inspection Violations
Mark Howard, Oil Spill Prevention Program Manager at the EPA and author of SPCC regulation 40CFR, part 112, provided an informative overview of SPCC regulations and discussed the difference between requirements and recommendations. Mark clarified that if your facility could (or does) discharge to navigable water, it will be inspected, which opens the door to violations and penalties. Some of the top violations he noted are related to loading rack and secondary containment issues, lack of site inspection records, integrity of inspection schedules and records, and improper applications of visual inspection.
Proactive Incident Management
Incident management can often seem like an insurmountable challenge because of the complex matrix of responsibilities—from strategic planning and health and safety to stakeholder risk management and more—but taking a proactive approach to incident management has proven to reduce costs and time-to-closure. And while incident management has always had a place in the oil and gas conversation, this year it was clearly top-of-mind for attendees. We’re seeing that companies are jumping on the opportunity to better prepare for releases and other incidents, which bodes well for the future of proactive incident management.
We shared our experience in conversations and a highlight reel of sites we’ve helped close using AIM (Antea Group Incident Management)—which you can view here. And if you’d like to know more about managing complex issues during site closure, read our blog Moving from Reactive to Proactive: Lessons from Three Decades of Incident Management.
Solar Technology Innovations
When you think of oil and gas operations, the use of renewable energy might not be at the top of your mind. However, as sustainability efforts grow around the world, new innovations are popping up in the oil and gas industry, too. Jay Leduc of Sprague Resources, an energy and material supply company, provided insight into their use of solar--to reduce energy costs related to terminal operations, they are applying lightweight, flexible solar technology to tank surfaces. This innovative solution utilizes existing infrastructure and helps pave the way forward for the integration of sustainable tech in the oil and gas sector.
This year, presentations at ILTA fell into five different tracks: environmental, business/operations, health and safety, security and emergency response, and international. Within the business/operations track, many of the sessions focused on resourcing trends in oil and gas, including a spotlight on the newest generation of workers: millennials. We’ve written a few of our own insights on integrating millennials in the workforce—and we agreed when speakers at the conference said that coaching is key. Providing millennials with an experienced mentor to show them the ropes can have massive benefits like improving retention, engagement, and productivity.
Exciting Trends This Year and Beyond
Just like last year and the years before, ILTA 2019 yielded worthwhile insights on the current state of the oil and gas industry and a glimpse into its future. A huge “thank you!” to the clients and new friends who stopped by our booth and let us in on their challenges, solutions, and questions. We hope to see you all there again next year!
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