Husky Energy ensures environmental compliance and reduces GHGs while shrinking reporting time/costs

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Courtesy of IHS

Headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Husky Energy Inc. is one of Canada’s largest integrated energy companies – with operations in Canada, the United States, China, Indonesia and Greenland. Husky Energy is committed to managing business in a socially responsible manner, focused on sustainable development and environmental stewardship without compromising the needs of stakeholders and the prospects of future generations.

To accomplish this strategic goal, Husky established a multi-year, multi-million dollar project called the Environmental Performance Reporting System (EPRS). EPRS is the information management hub of a company-wide environmental compliance and sustainability program – and the enterprise-level software at the core of the new system is IHS opsInfo™.

“We’re quite proud of EPRS and are continuing to build on it,” says Wayne Hillier, Coordinator of Strategic Environmental Initiatives at Husky Energy. “IHS opsInfo automatically pulls the relevant data and calculates emissions on a monthly basis, providing an opportunity for detailed analysis and trending, and revealing significant opportunities for efficiency improvements. It’s such an important resource that we even credited IHS in our 2009 Sustainable Development Report.”

Husky Energy’s EPRS project started three years ago to help improve environmental reporting at the company and minimize the environmental impact of its operations. Husky executives wanted to implement a reporting system that would deliver environmental information in much the same way that an accounting department can report on finances. They needed maximum transparency and accountability in their environmental reporting.

Prior to EPRS and opsInfo, Husky Energy relied on spreadsheets for tracking emissions and other environmental parameters at their facilities, with only a few trained analysts scrutinizing data from hundreds of employees in the field.

“The manual process for gathering data could take up to four months,” Hillier said. “There was no consistent methodology across the facilities. We had to enter those numbers into a spreadsheet manually and then sum all the daily values and aggregate the data on a monthly basis. You can just imagine all the opportunities for error there. You simply can’t manage compliance for an operation of our size with spreadsheets. You need an enterprise application like opsInfo and the interfaces that we developed to the root source data in EPRS. Now we generate reports in just a few days and we know our data quality is excellent.”

Recently, Husky Energy has been faced with new environmental regulatory challenges. The Canadian province of British Columbia has announced its intention to implement cap-andtrade regulations for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Husky Energy will now be obliged to report all their well-level drilling emissions to the government. Detailed tracking and accurate reporting capabilities, right down to the equipment level, will be invaluable in the company’s efforts to monitor progress and drive operational excellence.

“We are constantly faced with changes in regulations. Cap-and-trade reporting is something we would not be able to do in spreadsheets,” explains Lois Garrett, General Manager, HS&E at Husky. “With EPRS, we know we have the power and flexibility we need to meet the ever-growing regulatory burden here in Canada.”

The burden becomes evident when Hillier provides an example of the kinds of numbers that Husky has to contend with on a daily basis.

“Imagine a vessel 300 kilometres off the East coast of Canada responsible for producing greater than 100,000 barrels of crude oil a day,” he explains. “Now imagine trying to track environmental parameters from that facility, using a manual process, in order to report GHG emissions to the government. With opsInfo, our environmental managers are able to compile data from the vessel and show that the emissions intensity from that operation is one of the lowest in North America.”

Husky Energy’s GHG emissions reduction initiatives have been very effective and EPRS has helped document their progress. Improved data reporting showed a major reduction in emissions between 2006 and 2007 and the trend continues. Emissions in Husky’s east coast operations facility have been cut by 60 percent since 2006. IHS opsInfo software has been providing accurate, month-to-month data tracking.

Not only has EPRS made environmental auditors’ jobs easier by providing greater transparency and accuracy, it has also saved the company money. Hillier says that the costs for third party verification will drop by 50 percent compared to the previous years when it was done without the opsInfo system.

In addition, EPRS and opsInfo are also making Husky’s environmental reporting program itself more sustainable. Wendy Coons, Husky HS&E Business Analyst, adds, “Data entry methods and processes stay consistent across the enterprise so nothing is missed or forgotten due to employee turnover. Process and calculations are constant and centralized within the solution. Tracking a broad variety of environmental parameters becomes easier and more reliable.”

“We built the methodologies right into IHS opsInfo so we can readily see them,” Hillier says. “This allows anyone to have a clear understanding of how we calculate CO2 emissions from any particular flare in any particular plant for example.”

For Hillier and the environmental group, the value of EPRS and opsInfo can’t be overstated. “Environmental reporting must be done at the enterprise level with the latest technology due to the sheer magnitude of the data involved. IHS opsInfo is a user-friendly window into the database world.”

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