Phase 2 Human Health Risk Assessment of Oil and Gas Activity in Northeastern British Columbia March 2015 Presented by Bart Koppe, Intrinsik Inc. 1 Presentation outline
Introduction to the study Key findings Recommendations Next steps 2 Goals 1. To assess the health risks associated with oil and gas activity in NE British Columbia. 2. Where appropriate, provide recommendations
to address potential public health risks. 3 Overview of Project Phase 1 HHRA. Identification of health concerns relating to oil and gas development in NE B.C. Completed in 2012. Phase 2 HHRA. Assessment of the potential health risks in NE B.C. (with emphasis on chemical emissions). Completed in 2014. 4
Phase 2 Deliverables Task Deliverables 1 Phase 2 Direction Document 2 Literature Review
3 Screening Level Risk Assessment 4 Detailed Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) 5 Review of Regulatory Framework
6 Recommendations 5 Study Team Ministry of Health and Steering Committee Project Manager Independent
Technical Advisory Panel Technical Team: Human Health Risk Assessment Air Quality Water Resources (Groundwater) Engineering, GIS, Emergency Management Community Medicine, Epidemiology 6 Communication Stakeholder sessions in Fort St. John
(January 2013) Northern Health session in Fort St. John (October 2013) Steering Committee sessions throughout 7 Scope of work Developed iteratively through information collection and review, taking into account: Phase 1 findings (Fraser Basin Council report) Literature review
Input from steering committee Input from advisory panel Professional judgment 8 HHRA Approach Two parts: Screening level risk assessment (SLRA) Qualitative review of various candidate exposure scenarios, and ranking in terms of relevance/importance/significance. Ranking relied on use of a risk matrix (likelihood & consequence).
Quantitative Human Health Risk Assessment Focused on key exposure scenarios determined from the SLRA. Followed a conventional risk assessment paradigm. 9 How was the HHRA conducted? Developed by regulatory agencies (Health Canada, US EPA, World Health
Organization) When in doubt, err on the side of caution. Receptor Exposure Risk Hazard 10
Problem Formulation Identification of chemicals, exposure pathways and scenarios for assessment, along with people potentially at risk. Toxicity Assessment Determination of exposure limits for chemicals of concern. Risk Characterization Comparison of predicted exposure to exposure limits, including consideration of chemical interactions.
Exposure Assessment Prediction of exposures to chemicals of concern. Selected HHRA Study Area Area: ~175 x 150 km Includes: Highest population density Highest emission density
Greatest variety of emission sources First Nations Represents worstcase conditions 12 Two Assessment Scenarios Oil and Gas Scenario: Includes all ongoing air emissions from gas processing plants and various production facilities (e.g., compressor stations, fugitive emissions from tank storage). Cumulative Scenario: Includes air emissions
from oil and gas, other industries, transportation and community sources. 13 HHRA: Conceptual Model 14 Chemicals of Potential Concern Criteria Air Contaminants SO2
n-pentane Trimethylbenzenes Sulphur Compounds H2S 15 HHRA: Inhalation Results Risks were interpreted based on:
Source of the emissions. Spatial extent of the exceedances. Likelihood of exceedances. Degree of conservatism incorporated into the assessment. 16 Inhalation Results Findings of interest identified for the following chemicals of potential concern:
NO2 PM2.5 SO2 Acrolein Formaldehyde 17
18 19 20 21 22 Conclusion
The overall findings of the detailed human health risk assessment suggest that the public health risks associated with oil and gas activity in Northeastern B.C. are low. 23 Omissions from the HHRA Water Scenarios Accidental Releases Regulatory Review
24 Review of Regulatory Framework Objectives: to identify where current regulations are sufficient or exceed the necessary levels for the protection of public health and identify areas where critical aspects of the framework are lacking Review considered: Relevant regulations, guidelines, directives Industry best management practices (e.g., CAPP) 25
Regulatory Review: Acts Considered Provincial Federal Drinking Water Protection Act Canadian Environmental Protection Act Emergency Program Act National Energy Board Act
Environmental Assessment Act Railway Safety Act Environmental Management Act Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act Oil and Gas Activities Act Public Health Act Transport of Dangerous Goods Act Transportation Act Water Act
Water Protection Act Workers Compensation Act 26 Regulatory Review Review also considered: Relevant regulations, guidelines, directives Industry best management practices (e.g., CAPP) Focus of the review was on those aspects of the framework that relate to the protection of water quality, air quality and safety issues associated with normal operations and accidental releases
27 Comparison to Other Jurisdictions and Best Practices All relevant BC regulations were compared with equivalent regulations in a number of U.S. states and Alberta, as well as to applicable CAPP and API best practices Where BC was observed to differ from other jurisdictions or best practices, this was noted and it was suggested that the Province should review these issues to determine whether the provincial guidelines/regulations should be updated
28 Key Findings of the Regulatory Review In general, review demonstrates that existing framework is extensive and broadly protective of health Generally, BC regulations were comparable to the measures that have been adopted in other jurisdictions and in line with applicable best management practices Some findings were carried over into the Recommendations Report 29
Do not consider things like feasibility, enforceability, future (or planned) regulations 31 Themes 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
6. 7. 8. Public safety (2) Flaring, venting and fugitive emissions (1) Hydraulic fracturing (2) Legacy sites (1) Information management (1) Environmental monitoring (5) Health surveillance (1) Standards development (1) = 14 Recommendations
32 Public Safety Recommendation 1: The current tools applied to the calculation of Emergency Planning Zones (EPZ) may need to be updated Recommendation 2: Should consider the implementation of a reciprocal agreement framework for setbacks between the oil and gas industry and BCs communities
33 Flaring, venting and fugitive emissions Recommendation 3: The BC AAQOs should guide the development of regulations, directives and policies pertaining to venting, fugitive emissions, flaring limits, flaring notification and reporting, and flaring performance requirements. This should be done in a transparent manner that demonstrates how the objectives are considered. 34
Hydraulic Fracturing Source: BC Oil and Gas Commission Recommendation 4: Consider the implementation of baseline, pre-drilling groundwater testing requirements Recommendation 5: Consider refining the fracture fluid disclosure process to aid authorities and health professionals in accessing information about fluid ingredients, without compromising confidential business information
35 Legacy Sites Recommendation 6: When possible, the OGC Site Classification Tool and MoE Contaminated Sites Regulation framework should be used together in the assessment and management of legacy sites 36
Information management Recommendation 7: Evaluate the overall objectives and efficient use of the various databases that manage permits, facility information, wells and flare data, with the aim of identifying means to make the systems more accessible and user-friendly. 37 Environmental monitoring Recommendation 8: Consider using the information from the air quality study and
HHRA to help: Identify the location of future monitors Select the types of pollutants to be monitored. Recommendation 9: Once additional data for NE BC are available, the air quality predictions and health risk estimates should be revisited. 38 Environmental monitoring Recommendation 10: Existing aquifer
mapping should be expanded for NE BC to help enhance the protection of groundwater resources in relation to O&G development. Recommendation 11: Additional study of groundwater and surface water interactions with shallow aquifers and local groundwater flow conditions should be completed in NE BC. 39 Environmental monitoring Recommendation 12: Consider the overall goals of
the existing environmental monitoring programs for soil, water and biota, along with the presentation and quality of these data within the existing databases, specifically as these relate to the value that these data could provide with respect to human health and environmental impact. 40 Health surveillance Recommendation 13: The Province should explore tailoring their health surveillance to determine whether or not there are differences in disease rates
in those areas identified in the HHRA with the highest predicted air concentrations. If possible, such future health surveillance would help verify the conclusions of the HHRA. 41 Standards Development BCs Air Quality Objectives Recommendation 14: The BC AAQOs should be reviewed and updated based on the
existing provincial framework for developing air quality objectives. 42 Next Steps Public release of reports on March 26, 2015 Follow up information sessions 43
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Acknowledgements Brian Richards Guy Proulx Morris Goldenberg Medical Research Endowment Conflict of Interest Disclosure Gillian Rowe, Ph.D Angela Troyer, Ph.D Kelly Murphy, Ph.D Lynn Hasher, Ph.D Renee Biss, M.A. Has no real or apparent conflicts of interest to report.
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