New API Energy Excellence Program Increases Industry Focus on Performance
Posted February 9, 2021
Setting a high bar for industry safety and operational performance isn’t new for API. For nearly a century, API has led the way in developing standards that establish how natural gas and oil and the products made from them will be safely produced and delivered to consumers – including the operations themselves, from equipment and machinery to transportation and distribution systems.
That’s the foundation for launching the new API Energy Excellence initiative – which specifies what top performance means for safety and environmental protection, as well as security and safeguarding communities. Importantly, it also sets the expectation that every API member applies the program’s 13 core elements to accelerate safety and environmental progress in the natural gas and oil industry.
The 13 core elements range from corporate leadership and engaging with communities to emergency preparedness and managing operational risk. These set the stage for action by energy companies of all sizes that will drive industry-wide progress. The program provides key direction for API members as they apply API/industry standards, train their employees, share best practices and report progress on an annual basis.
It’s significant that progress on the core elements will be tracked through annual, transparent reporting. This is the accountability piece of a program that defines operational excellence and spurs measurable and meaningful action.
The program is a logical move for API. Our members already are on the cutting edge in innovating and developing new technologies to solve some of the world’s biggest energy challenges – even as they continue meeting ever-increasing world demand for affordable, reliable and cleaner energy. Also, as API President and CEO Mike Sommers said recently, ours is an industry that’s “unified in accelerating environmental performance across all operations” as it meets that global demand and addresses the risks of climate change.
API was born as a standards-setting organization and has developed more than 700 of them to improve the production and transportation of natural gas and oil and products made from them. API standards are developed under the American National Standards Institute’s accredited process – recognized for its technical rigor, transparency, balance and consensus. Standards produced using this process protect workers, host communities and the nation’s energy infrastructure.
API Energy Excellence builds on and draws upon this robust standards platform and establishes a cross-industry model – broad in its purpose and approach, yet achievable for individual companies because it provides flexibility for individual companies as they implement it.
API Energy Excellence is a consequential step for our industry as it meets the dual challenge of supplying energy and protecting the environment – today, tomorrow and in the future.
About The Author
Debra Phillips is senior vice president of API’s Global Industry Services division, which is responsible for standards setting, certification, training, events, publications and safety programs for industry operations. Before joining API, Debra served on the leadership team at the American Chemistry Council, where she was the catalyst behind the chemical industry’s sustainability strategy. She earned her undergraduate degree in biology from Albright College and holds a master’s degree in environmental toxicology from Duke University.
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