Global Climate Change and Atmospheric Emissions
We believe that reasonable, economically sound steps should be taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We also believe that any regulations relating to atmospheric emissions should take into account the cost and supply of energy to consumers, the long-term economic impacts of energy cost, and flexible market-based mechanisms to distribute these costs equitably.
We have taken numerous actions company-wide to reduce our atmospheric emissions: We established new air emission targets for greenhouse gases, VOCs, SOx, and NOx, based on achieving a 5% reduction for our 2001 asset base on a normalized basis by 2005. Additionally, we will establish aggressive targets for new operations as we expand our asset base.
Clean Fuels Program
As a supplier of fossil fuels, we know that emissions from the consumption of gasoline and other fuels can impact air quality. As part of our commitment to product stewardship, we demand good environmental performance and excellent fuels performance from our products. Our gasoline is cleaner than the United States national averages for sulfur and benzene content, and our reformulated gasoline is cleaner than required by federal standards.
Because improvements in energy efficiency will need to play a greater role in meeting the world's rising demand for energy, we are supporting the development of energy efficient technologies through our Hess Microgen subsidiary. Hess Microgen cogeneration units generate both electrical and thermal power from the same energy source. The cogeneration units are more efficient than central power stations and subject to lower transmission losses so that a greater percentage of fuel is converted into usable energy. In addition to natural gas fueled units, systems have been developed to run on methane derived from livestock facilities such as dairy farms. These systems convert methane that might otherwise enter the atmosphere as a waste product into useful electricity and thermal energy. In regards to air emissions, the units are also capable of meeting some of the lowest emission standards in the world, including those of the California South Coast Air Quality Management District.
We are participating in the development of new fuel cell technology through our support of Nuvera - a leading company in the commercial development of fuel processors, fuel cell stacks and integrated power modules. We believe that the development of fuel cells, which convert hydrogen into electricity through a process that results in pure water as the waste, offers significant future opportunities for efficient, environmentally benign power sources. Additional information on Nuvera is available here.
Our goal is to prevent any spill from happening. However, because spills can still occasionally occur, we have strategic response plans in place and personnel dedicated to emergency response and remediation. If a spill does occur, it is quickly addressed and mitigated.
Waste and Discharges
One of our operational goals is to minimize waste production and resource usage. We do so by employing best management practices and innovative technologies, and by promoting recycling activities. A summary of our waste and discharge performance is available in our annual Sustainability Report.
Exceedance and Enforcement Actions
Although 100% compliance is our operational goal, exceedances of permitted levels can and have occurred, as do citations from regulatory authorities. A summary of our compliance performance is included in our annual Sustainability Report.
Examples of Environmental Responsibility
We strive to be good stewards of the environment and minimize the environmental footprint of our operations and products. Some examples of our environmental efforts include:
Biodiversity: In Sumatra, Indonesia, we organized a team of environmental scientists from the University of Sriwijaya to conduct a re-vegetation study of native plant species at the close of one of our well sites. Based on the results of the study, we employed a local labor force to successfully re-vegetate 79 acres at the site.
Renewable Energy: Hess has used renewable energy to clean up contaminated groundwater. Windmills generate compressed air to power pumps used in clean-up projects. The wind-powered systems need at least 5 mph winds to operate, but otherwise need no additional electricity to power the self-controlled pumps. We are continuing to find new ways to apply this innovative technology.
Environmental Design: The coke-handling facility at HOVENSA L.L.C. in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, has employed a unique design to reduce particulate emissions and the potential impact to the neighboring marine environment.