The Environmental Cost of Energy and Why the Future of Compliance is Digital
Anti-corruption, Compliance and Ethics for Energy Sector 2020
25-27 March 2020, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The different forms of energy production and consumption impact the environment through air pollution, water pollution, thermal pollution, and solid waste disposal. Oil spills, radioactive releases and similar mishaps causing harm to the environment and surrounding populations have time and again shook our collective conscience. How do we reduce the environmental impact of energy production and usage & protect our natural environment while pursuing sustainable economic growth?
While the world has woken up to the perils of climate change and the urgent need to reduce our carbon footprint, moving to clean energy must be understood as a step by step process and not one that can be achieved instantly. The energy industry currently has the complex task of catering to the continuously increasing demand for energy at the same time reducing the environmental impact of their operations. The onus is on regulators, governments and energy companies to define clearly and ensure adherence to environmental protection regulations and guidelines.
Energy companies and their operations have increasingly become the subject of public debate globally; failure to comply with regulatory requirements can impact a company’s reputation. Large energy corporations depend on contractors, sub-contractors, suppliers as well as vendors during the different stages in their value chain. Energy companies are expected by regulations as well as the general public to hold the third parties they associate to high standards of environmental compliance and integrity. The key here is to establish for all stages of the value chain, robust processes, standards and systems that are trackable and measurable.
Creating a culture of compliance & ethics is important for global organizations to ensure that their employees and third parties they work with adhere to internal standards as well as laws. The role of Ethics and Compliance Officers will be crucial in communicating across the organization and to their contractors the codes of conduct and standards, considering the cultural differences of employees in different locations.
Keeping up with the increasingly stricter environmental norms and regulations internationally as well as regionally is a challenging task for organizations operating across multiple locations. The future of environmental compliance is digital. Organizations are adopting digital solutions to track and manage all stages of the asset lifecycle, offering accurate processes for hazardous substance management, supplier disclosures, regulatory reporting are the need of the hour. Monitoring the environmental impact of existing operations as well as planning ahead for new operations can be made easier using environmental compliance management systems. Throughout the lifecycle of energy production, exploration, transmission, transportation and usage, digital solutions can ensure that materials and processes conform to environmental laws, industry-specific sustainability directives, and other eco-friendly specifications.
Environmental protection in the energy sector through compliance measures and addressing the environmental trust challenge is a key part of the agenda at the Anti-corruption, Compliance and Ethics forum for Energy Sector 2020. The forum brings together decision-makers, legal and compliance experts from the major energy companies in Europe to address global compliance risks and challenges, and strategies to become more digital and responsive.
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