HSSE / safety cases
Nuclear powered UK – from requirement to reality
Nearly two years on from the publication of the UK government's energy review in July 2006, the prospect of new nuclear power stations in the UK is edging closer to reality. May 2007 saw the "Meeting the Energy Challenge" White Paper state that the government was "proceeding, on a contingent basis". The January 2008 Nuclear Energy White Paper confirmed that it would be in the public's interest to allow private sector companies the option of investing in new nuclear power stations.
Periodic review – opportunity or chore?
Good practice calls for a periodic review of major hazard safety cases to ensure that the 'case for safety' remains valid. Indeed, many regulatory regimes and corporate standards have a requirement for 'periodic' or 'thorough' review, and provide guidance on the frequency and content of the review. At first sight, the potentially wide ranging nature of periodic reviews can appear daunting and onerous, with the potential to place a heavy burden on resources. But a well managed periodic review provides a great opportunity to strengthen the connection between the safety case and the real world.
Regulatory reform – empowering the safety case
Forty years ago in the UK, the Health and Safety at Work Act (HSAWA) was introduced to replace the patchwork quilt of prescriptive safety regulations with a regulatory regime that set broad, non-prescriptive goals. Espousing consultation and engagement, the new regime was designed to deliver a proportionate, targeted and risk-based approach, underpinned by a fundamental principle: 'those that create risk are best placed to manage it'.
Risk recognition keeps industry safely wrapped up against the cold
Risktec Solutions Limited is bringing its consultancy expertise to bear in some of the planet's harshest environments
Safety cases for the offshore wind industry
Safety cases well and truly divide opinion. Their critics see an isolated exercise of complex analysis and written work that does not reflect the real world and sits on a shelf gathering dust. Whilst regrettably there is historical evidence to justify these views, a good safety case is an excellent way of ensuring projects are conceived and executed safely (see Box 1).
Small but mighty: an introduction to Small Modular Reactors
The size of civil nuclear power reactor units has steadily grown from 60 MWe in the 1950s to today's 1600+ MWe, driven by economies of scale. So too has the capital investment required, to the extent that funding new nuclear power stations is becoming prohibitively expensive for many nations.
Ten good practices for developing HSE cases in the oil industry
The requirement to develop a formal safety case for any major oil and gas facility has been in place for many years in regulated environments such as the UK and Australia. Today, oil companies and industry associations are applying this requirement in other regions of the world where such legislation does not currently exist. This provides an opportunity to learn from experience and develop concise and pragmatic health, safety and environment (HSE) cases.
The impact of the EC offshore directive on the UK offshore safety case regime
In June 2013, the European Commission (EC) published the Offshore Directive, which aims to reduce as far as practicable the occurrence of major accidents related to offshore oil and gas operations and limit their consequences. In response to the directive, a draft consultative document was launched in July 2014 by the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) setting out the ways that the EC requirements will be incorporated into the existing UK Offshore Safety Case regime (Ref 1).