Assessing the Expansion of Saudi Arabia’s largest Gas Plant

Challenge

Saudi Aramco proposed to expand the capacity of the Yanbu natural gas liquid (NGL) pipeline through the provision of an additional de-ethaniser column. This required additional associated infrastructure, including a new 80MW steam generation plant. The new plant required consent in accordance with national, local and Saudi Aramco Regulations and standards.

Engain conducted a thorough environmental impact assessment (EIA) using UK and international guidance and methodologies, and encompassing Saudi Arabia’s regulatory requirements.

The scoping of the EIA highlighted two areas where the potential for significant environmental effects was considered. Our detailed investigation and assessment revealed that these were effects on ambient air quality, and the potential effect of unabated contamination of groundwater seeping to the adjacent Red Sea only 200 m away.

Following the mitigation hierarchy, we identified spill containment measures to avoid groundwater contamination, and Best Available Technology for emissions control to fall within acceptable air quality limits.

We also identified dust mitigation measures and a construction environmental management plan to control potential environmental effects during plant assemblage.

The Environmental Impact Statement reported on the investigation findings and the mitigation measures that were included in the final project design. These measures ensured that the predictions were robust and that Royal Commission standards for environmental quality were met.

Achievements

  • Rapid on the ground investigations and surveys
  • Introduced the best available technology (BAT) approach to demonstrate environmental protection
  • Provided robust environmental performance criteria for air quality and contamination
  • Conducted the Environmental Impact Assessment and presented the Environmental Impact Statement, which gained the expansion consent

Partners & Stakeholders

  • Saudi Aramco

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