The oil and gas industry is such a crucial sector of the global economy and the sustainability of human life. As of 2017, the global dependency on oil and gas sources of energy topped to about 4 trillion cubic meters of the energy resources. With the increased demand comes additional sustainability challenges that threaten to impact the highly demanded production severely.
High Risk Of Accidents
One thing that clearly defines the oil and gas production sector is the increased threshold of risk to accidents. Oil production companies operate in otherwise risky grounds such as offshore drilling areas in the high seas. The risk of accident in such environments is quite high. Some of the dominant kinds of accidents that have plagued the sector in the past include leakage of toxic oil and gas, leading to severe environmental pollution.
Whereas oil mining companies have been on the forefront as far as risk mitigation is concerned, human error has been a major predominant issue which has led to some of the worst oil and gas accidents in the history of the industry. The threshold of such accidents and the potential impacts they have on the environment is so potent that it threatens the sustainability of the entire sector even as environmentalists move on high gear, calling for resourceful utilization of the environment.
Straining Of The Existing Resources
The existing resources in terms of deposits of oil and gas, are facing a major constraint in our time. All companies have to increase their production to meet the expanded demand for commodities. In response, the companies have invested in more oil and gas extraction technologies such as the fracking technique. This concept is quite effective in helping meet the 90 million barrels of oil that the world consumes per day.
Fracking, however, does have significant environmental impacts, not only in pollution but also causing an increased risk of seismic shifts of the earth’s crust. Whereas no major seismic event has been recently associated with hydraulic fracking, scientists and safety experts believe that it is just a matter of time before one rocks the world.
Besides, when such fracking occurs under the ocean, the released toxic and carcinogenic chemicals such as benzene, hydrochloric acid, and diesel are a major cause for worry. These sustainability challenges can be effectively resolved through ethical leadership, coupled with the prudential application of risk management techniques.