EAD, ADNOC celebrate one year filled with environmental collaboration achievements

After the establishment of a plethora of successful projects, the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD) and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) celebrated a year of achievements.

Last year ADNOC, the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE), and EAD signed a framework agreement on the same day to explore opportunities for greater collaboration in environmental protection and conservation. As a result of the Memorandum of Understanding, all parties have witnessed a long list of initiatives which took place across significant topics such as air quality, marine water, climate change, waste management and environmental permitting and assessments.

EAD collaborated with ADNOC on over 40 ADNOC environmental assessment projects. The careful assessment of environmental impacts of alternative design and the implementation of mitigation measures and best environmental practices, in some of ADNOC’s Marine projects, has helped save over 175 square kilometers of critical habitats.

With a focus on air quality, EAD and ADNOC electronically linked ADNOC’s ambient air quality monitoring network with EAD’s central air quality database. This project ensured the exchange of data between the two entities which served the interest of Abu Dhabi and the UAE at large. The partnership brought together 10 stations belonging to ADNOC and 20 stations belonging to EAD, to form a total of 30 fixed stations which were distributed over various regions of Abu Dhabi, measuring a total of 17 pollutants and sensors continuously. This initiative will provide accurate data and technical analysis about the status of air quality for decision-makers to develop appropriate mitigation plans and to help manage pollution emissions in the capital.

Additionally, the initiation of a pilot project to e-link ADNOC’s Sour Gas Plant CEM System to EAD’s monitoring system in 2020, was another successful air quality achievement. Currently all 141 parameters and its units are correctly configured as per EAD e-linking technical requirements. There are over 400+ emission sources or stacks in ADNOC Group across all operating assets. The results of this pilot study will direct the future work and steps taken between EAD and ADNOC to enhance preparedness for environmental emergency incidents.

EAD and ADNOC also partnered on the Abu Dhabi Air Emissions Inventory, which is part of EAD’s comprehensive program for air quality management in the emirate of Abu Dhabi. The report gives a detailed description on all the key man-made emission sources and provides an update to the inventory. In 2018, ADNOC and all concerned entities in the emirate supported EAD’s efforts in collecting data and information about the sources, amounts, and types of pollutants from different sectors in the emirate for the inventory.

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The results of this inventory produced over 50 high-definition sectors and pollutant-specific emission maps which identify the location and intensity of each emission source in Abu Dhabi for the very first time. ADNOC provided detailed data and insights from all oil and gas activities in the emirate, covering exploration, production to processing and refining. This continuous partnership will set the foundation for air quality modelling and provide essential information for designing science-based measures to mitigate and manage emissions effectively.

During the past year, ADNOC also participated in the preparation of the draft decree for Air Quality and the review of the decree related to Hydrogen Sulfide and Benzene concentrations in the atmosphere.

In the field of climate change, EAD, in cooperation with its partners from all sectors, worked on updating the fourth cycle of the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Inventory and emission projections for Abu Dhabi. ADNOC helped EAD implement this important project by providing information and data on the oil and gas sector, which was included in the report to help calculate the percentage of this key sector’s contribution. This was also used to compare oil and gas to other sectors as well.

The results showed a reduction in the oil and gas sector emissions by 27 percent in comparison to levels in 2016. Moreover, EAD’s analysis of GHG mitigation policies showed that ADNOC policies for flaring mitigation and efficiency improvement will significantly contribute to stabilisation of the emirate’s future emissions, by reducing the oil and gas sector emissions to 53% of its business-as-usual emissions by 2030.

For marine water and sediment quality, ADNOC was a member of the technical committee for the enhancement of marine water quality, which was led by the EAD team. Both entities worked on several projects and studies for protection and sustainability. ADNOC also supported EAD in the development of new marine water quality regulatory instruments such as the Marine Water Quality Executive Decree and the Marine Water Quality Discharge Standards and Limits. Additionally, EAD and ADNOC explored a proposal to clean Abu Dhabi seas using a Seabin.

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