PSEG Transforms Environmental Compliance into Powerful Driver for Operational Efficiency, Sustainability

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Courtesy of IHS

As New Jersey’s oldest and largest investor-owned utility provider, Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG) provides gas and electricity to three-quarters of the state’s population as well as supplying power to Connecticut and New York. PSEG has always been committed to ensuring that its facilities are in full compliance with a multitude of municipal, state and federal regulations regarding air, water, and waste emissions but, over the years, the proliferation of those regulatory mandates was becoming increasingly burdensome. In 2008, PSEG’s environmental management team took action – authorizing implementation of an enterprise-level Environmental Management Information System (EMIS) built on IHS opsInfo software, part of the IHS Environmental Performance Solution. The initial goals of the centralized EMIS were manifold: to enhance compliance reporting, to better manage environmental risks, to make environmental permitting evaluations more efficient, to improve greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting, to deliver environmental metrics for sustainability reporting and to provide greater continuity during staff changes.

“A new EMIS was the fastest, easiest way for us to achieve an enterprise approach to compliance,” said David Hinchey, Manager of Environmental Permitting and Technical Services at PSEG. “We needed a consolidated system capable of advanced data processing, monitoring of emissions limits, and regulatory reporting. But it turned out that we gained a lot more than compliance management. The EMIS was an important step in improving our knowledge management and operational excellence.”

PSEG previously collected air, water and waste data from disparate sources all around the company. Each plant had its own set of systems, often heavily customized and specific to local operations, and used its own methods to manually compile reports on its environmental performance. Knowledge of exactly how information was being captured and aggregated typically remained with a single environmental professional at each plant – now the processes are standardized across the fleet, to the largest extent possible, and the knowledge base is now distributed across a team of subject matter experts to reduce company risk in cases of staff turnover with EMIS used as the institutional tool.

The Challenge

  • Enhance environmental regulatory compliance by establishing a centralized system
  • Manage environmental risks more effectively including maintenance of environmental permits
  • Track and report on environmental metrics for corporate scorecards and sustainability index
  • Promote operational accountability through task management, ensure continuity thru staff changes

The Solution

  • IHS Environmental Performance Solution with IHS opsInfo

The Results

  • Replaced 20 redundant systems and 1000s of spreadsheets with 1 enterprise EMIS
  • Enabled centralized compliance tracking of 45,000+ tasks for 200+ environmental permits
  • Automated integration with process historians, lab information and grid operator systems – e.g. extracting 8,000 air emission points every minute
  • Tracked water discharge from 60 outfalls with 5,000+ parameters – reduced time for monthly water report from 3 days to a few hours
  • Provided environmental metrics for sustainability reporting to shareholders, DJSI, GRI, etc.
  • Supported adoption of EMIS as task management system for operations side of business

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