Common Health, Safety and Environmental Concerns in Upstream Oil and Gas Sector: Implications for HSE Management in Ghana

Seth Oppong
Abstract:
This paper explores the literature to identify common occupational injuries, diseases, and psychological wellbeing on oil rigs as well as the negative environmental impacts of the upstream oil and gas sector. It ends by making recommendations for effective health, safety, and environmental (HSE) management. Review of the literature showed that contusion (bruise), cuts, and laceration are the commonest occupational injuries that workers on the oil rig suffer and that the injuries mostly affect the hand and finger, leg, and eyes of the offshore workers. These injuries were found to be caused mostly by direct stroke, jamming and overstrain. Similarly, accidental poisoning, musculoskeletal disorders, respiratory disorders and diseases of the digestive system were also documented as the commonest occupational diseases among offshore workers. The literature also shows that working offshore is associated with poorer psychological wellbeing or health; this is to say that offshore workers tend to experience higher levels of stress, burnout, anxiety, depression, low job satisfaction (particularly with the environmental conditions associated with their work), and sleep disorders. Finally, the literature review indicated that land-use problems, air pollution, acid rain, climate change, habitat disruption, environmental degradation, oil spills and leakages are some of environmental impacts of upstream oil production. This review was concluded by recommending some measures for the management of the HSE hazards associated with the oil and gas sector.

Keywords:
Oil and Gas; Ghana; Occupational injuries; Psychological wellbeing; Environmental Impact; HSE

Full text available in PDF: Academicus-MMXIV-9-093-106.pdf

Digital Object Identifier (DOI): http://dx.medra.org/10.7336/academicus.2014.09.07

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