KazTransOil: Thinking about the Future
KazTransOil is one of the major oil transportation companies in Kazakhstan. Its goals are to ensure stable growth in oil transit, quality technical maintenance and safe operation of pipelines. The company also aims to put several new pipelines into operation on promising routes. At present, KazTransOil employs over 7,000 people. The company invests considerable funding in securing its staff, ensuring high-level corporate culture and developing the social responsibility of the business. KazTransOil’s systems of quality, environmental protection, health care and safety are operating successfully, meeting international standards and demonstrating the efficiency of the company’s efforts.
Kazakh enterprises often come across the situation where management systems are a compulsory condition for developing their businesses. More often, these systems are developed in line with international standards that most countries, including Kazakhstan, have adopted. These systems help to take into account various interests of the company, its partners, customers, the state and society.
KazTransOil, a sister company of Kazmunaigas, has systems for managing quality, environmental protection, healthcare and safety. These systems are certified, have proved useful and have been functioning successfully for several years, meeting international standards ISО 9001:2000, ISО 14001:2004 and OHSAS 18001:2007.
It should be noted that all of these systems do not work separately but function as a whole. This is very important because an integrated management system (IMS) promotes a decrease in the production’s negative impact on the environment, an increase in reliability and safety of the operation of oil pipelines, and the creation of a favourable image for the company.
The IMS suggests that every member of the KazTransOil staff be involved in it. Thus, the initial stage determines the actual and potential impact by production processes on the environment, and the possible production risks of the personnel. A list of significant environmental aspects and high risks is drafted based on this data. The following step involves all of the production personnel in intellectual work, which will determine the possibilities of applying alternative options and technical solutions as the best ecologically efficient ways. Then, all suggestions are considered and stages of their implementation are specified. Approved suggestions are submitted as short-term and long-term programmes and plans for the company’s development. In line with these programmes are such measures as the reconstruction of existing equipment, the implementation of new technical solutions or the security systems of oil pipeline sites. The latter provides for an automatic fire extinguishing system, a gas alarm, and the technology’s shift to safe mode in case of emergencies.
The sense of responsibility for the environment, their private safety and health, and the quality of their work has increased among KazTransOil workers since the implementation of the IMS. At the same time, each specialist can see and evaluate his or her contribution to the common deed at his level.
The company has promising plans to develop the IMS further. These plans provide for searching for more optimum and efficient management options suited to the large and complex corporate structure that KazTransOil has.
The company is conducting significant and diverse work on labour protection and industrial safety. KazTransOil is not only creating safe working conditions for all of its workers but has also assumed social responsibility and the responsibility for potential danger. KazTransOil ensures mandatory insurance of those people whose health and property have been damaged as a result of negative consequences of its production activities. The mandatory items include employer’s and environmental insurance. Also, in addition to legal requirements, on the company’s initiative each worker has been insured against accidents and diseases that are not related to their production activities.
In order to reduce the various risks to a minimum, the company has adopted a special programme as part of the approved social policy in the area of quality, environmental protection, healthcare and safety, which specifies actions on and responsibilities for customer requirements. It also reflects KazTransOil’s desire to improve its social activities. In particular, the programme provides for measures to reduce emissions, land and water pollution and energy consumption and to collect and recycle production waste. It also envisages constant training of workers, who may influence on the appearance of possible risks and their elimination. A seminar entitled ‘Expertise in integrated quality and environment management system in line with international standards’ was held at the Zeren training centre last year. Over 200 managers and specialists from subdivisions of the central office and subsidiaries went through this phased training during the three-week seminar.
The company annually pays an emission tax. Last year alone, it added 106.989 million tenge to the national budget.
In the first half of 2007, the company developed a comprehensive environmental programme for 2007-2010, which was designed in line with ISO 14001:2004 standards. KazTransOil’s subdivisions and departments agreed to this programme. The management approved and submitted the programme to stakeholders, including Kazmunaigas and the Kazakh Ministry of Environmental Protection.
The programme includes such measures as the removal of processed mercury bearing lamps for demercurisation (about 300 million tenge); the cleaning of oil-polluted soil and disturbed land revegetation (over 70 million tenge); the removal and storage of solid household waste and production waste in special places (about 15 million tenge); the pumping of household and production wastewater (over 37 million tenge); an environmental audit on the KazTransOil production sites (200 million tenge); a commercial and production wastewater recycling system (285 million tenge); the reconstruction of a household sewage system with biological treatment (42 million tenge), etc.
These and other measures allow the production’s impact on the environment to be reduced to a minimum. The existing system makes it possible to allow efficient preventive measures to take place against emergencies and accidents of environmental pollution. This was confirmed when KazTransOil received ISO 14001 certificate for its environment management system from leading international certifying bodies in this area.
In line with the national policy aimed at adopting preventive measures in the area of environmental protection, monitoring plays a key role in environmental protection. In this connection, KazTransOil has begun to develop a geographic information system for monitoring, and for analysing the priority of environmental protection measures.
KazTransOil has recycled oil slime and oil-polluted soil for several years, attracting specialised contracting organisations for this work. First of all, ‘historical’ pollutions will be cleaned. In 2007, the company’s Eastern branch used the method of biological treatment to clean 36,000 tonnes of polluted soil. The Western branch recycled 50,000 cubic metres of soil of this kind last year and in the first half of this year. At the same time, KazTransOil required that its contractors fully restore the disturbed soil for agricultural use. Perennial grasses are planted on reclaimed lands. The company is also paying close attention to waste sales in secondary markets.
Ensuring fire safety is a key aspect in KazTransOil’s business. To this end, the company has adopted a single policy that complies with the Kazakh Law On Fire Safety, government regulations, standards and rules in this sphere. All of the company’s plants are equipped with automatic fire extinguishing and alarm systems, fire pipelines and other fire safety facilities. With the view of updating and improving these systems and maintaining them in working condition, KazTransOil’s programme for oil pipeline development in 2009-2013 envisages a number of preventive measures.
Following the principle ‘it is easier to prevent than to treat’, the company is doing a lot of work on fire prevention and its personnel’s fire safety training. To this end, comprehensive wide-scale training is organised annually, involving all possible resources and funds. Training courses are usually held between May and September when the weather is hot and the fire risk is high. Basic methods of major fire containment and suppression are worked out during these trainings. The main thing in these cases is rapidity, coordination and accuracy in actions.
KazTransOil is not going to stop after what has been accomplished and well understands that the certificate is not the end but only the beginning of a long and, of course, successful journey to the peak of its business. Thanks to its work, KazTransOil has the reputation of the company aspiring for new standards of quality, environmental protection, healthcare and security. The high-level responsibility for its activities and care for its personnel are the key operational principles of the main oil transporter in Kazakhstan.
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