EnergiesNet.com 06 27 2022
Approximately 925 gallons of chemical asphaltene inhibitor is said to have spilled during its supply to one of the floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) involved in oil production in the offshore Stabroek Block.
Information reaching the newspaper is that the 925 gallons, approximately 18.5 barrels of the chemical was being delivered from a supply boat when a leakage seemed to have occurred. “A supply ship was discharging chemicals to the FPSO and approximately 925 gallons were spilled which is around 18.5 drums. The chemical asphaltene inhibitor resulted in several fishes dying and floating to the surface,” a source related. The information stated further, “I gather no one was paying attention and the hose that linked the two vessels leaked.” “The captain of the supply ship has left Guyana I understand, and we also heard that no report was made to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).”
Minister of Natural Resources Vickram Bharrat told the Kaieteur News that this spill would have occurred “a few months ago”. He had committed to getting information about the spill, and later confirmed that it happened months ago, that “there is no recent one (spill),” and that what is now being reported might be from what occurred previously now making the rounds. However, checks have provided no reports highlighting such an occurrence in recent months.
Minister Bharrat reiterated however that he would have checked around and confirmed that the matter is not recent. Kaieteur News was unable to ascertain what procedures, legal or financial penalties were imposed, if necessary, but the minister did confirm too that, “the EPA had dealt with it (spill).”
Corrosionpedia describes an asphaltene inhibitor as a chemical used in the oil and gas industry to remove asphaltenes from crude oil. Asphaltenes are the impurities found in crude oil that if not removed can choke refining equipment. Heavy crude oil contains solid asphaltene deposits during the production stage. Asphaltenes, are the insoluble compounds that are always present in crude oil and must be removed before and during the processing phase in a refinery.
The online chemical dictionary says that in the petroleum industry, asphaltenes can cause significant damage to machinery as they tend to clog highly capitalized infrastructure such as well tubulars, crude oil pipelines and subsurface equipment such as pumps and compressors. This clogging can eventually halt the crude oil refining process. Both light and heavy crude contain asphaltenes. The asphaltene concentration is higher in heavy crude oil but the concentration usually remains stable during heavy crude oil production and therefore does not lead to well clogging.
However, the chances of well clogging are said to be very high for light crude oil, which is the quality produced here in Guyana, because it has varying amounts of asphaltene, which may become deposited in the production tubular. During the crude processing, asphaltene is produced in the form of asphalt and is considered to be a waste material or byproduct. Asphaltene inhibitor is said to exhibit no toxicity to human body and/or environment, but precautions must be taken to avoid inhalation, ingestion, or contact with skin or eyes, it was further stated.
kaieteurnewsonlines.com 06 27 2022