Health and safety issues in the oil industry related to sudden or unexpected generation of H2S by micro-organisms

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Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is a toxic gas that can cause major health and corrosion problems for the oil and gas industry. The generation and release of H2S by bacteria is unavoidable because sulfide-producing bacteria thrive when seawater and water comes into contact with oil sludge.

This guidance provides a single source of information on factors influencing the growth and development of H2S-generating bacteria, the areas and circumstances in which this may create problems, how to monitor and control its release and how to assess and manage risk. It covers:

  • The science behind generation of H2S associated with microbiological activity.
  • Industry-specific areas of work where microbially generated H2S may be encountered.
  • Risk assessment and management, including identifying risk situations and managing workers’ exposure.
  • Methods for monitoring of microbiological activity and microbially generated H2S.
  • Control of microbial sulfide generation including use of biocides and physical or chemical management of the environment.

This publication is aimed at on-site personnel, for example health and safety/site managers.

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