• Strong and noticeable support from management levels The pro- gramme must have the conviction and commitment of refinery man - agement. These two aspects will be clearly expressed in the estab- lishment of an incentive scheme for front-line operators and shift supervisors in the different process - ing plants. Management commit- ment and support are essential, and potential savings are the best and most convincing argument. • Economic incentives: operating and shift handover performance bonuses Incentives of an economic nature are fundamental to the suc- cess of a programme that requires such an important sustained effort on the part of the participating operators. An incentive, in the form of a monthly performance bonus for operators, could be tied to the daily performance of the furnace within draft and excess oxygen parameters defined by consensus between oper - ators and refinery management as operational goals. The accumulated total hours per shift within these goals could act as a quantitative ele- ment to define the monthly bonus for draft and oxygen. The number of shift ‘handovers’ (to the takeover shift) within draft and excess oxy- gen targets would add an additional incentive to act as an element of col- laboration and cohesion between participating operators. • Operative oxygen analysers Functioning in situ (extractive) oxygen analysers are crucial to pro- gramme success. To serve those heaters that do not have such in-situ analysers, refinery management should provide portable equipment, which is abundant and affordable in the marketplace and extremely sim- ple to operate. COHT programme basis The COHT programme would be aimed at furnace operators and supervisors, and its primary objec- tive is to keep refinery process heaters operating within the draft and excess oxygen operational tar- gets set for each unit (and reviewed periodically). To this end, the plant data records from the DCS could be used to compute the number of hours the shift targets have been
fully met (‘on target’ hours). At the end of each month, the operators and the supervisor would receive an economic bonus (‘draft and oxy- gen bonus’) proportional to the total monthly on-target hours. In the same way, an additional bonus could be established for ‘shift deliveries’ or handovers in on-target conditions. This additional incentive would promote solidarity among heater personnel while maintaining the operational stability and effi - ciency of the plant. A simplified summary of the responsibilities of COHT pro- gramme partakers is shown below: Operators • Maintain heater draft and excess oxygen within set operational limits throughout a working shift as well as for shift handover Prompt and specific action is required by the petroleum downstreamsector to prevent unnecessary and wasteful use of fossil fuels Engineers and supervisors • Provide the necessary technical training to operators • Evaluate and monitor direct fired heater performance • Establish and update heater oper- ational targets for draft and excess O 2 Managerial levels • Support operational target setting • Develop and enforce economic incentives • Supervise and evaluate pro- gramme progress Conclusions Prompt and specific action is required by the petroleum down- stream sector, not against the use of fossil fuels as such, but to prevent unnecessary and wasteful use. It is, therefore, unavoidable to begin
minimising Scope 1 emissions pro- duced by the burning of such fuels through exhaustive and continuous attention and control programmes on the main sources of these emis- sions, namely, the process heaters. Since rational use of fuel and maximum containment of emit- ted pollutants ultimately depend on process heater front-line opera- tors, the simplest option, with the lowest cost and a very high soci- oeconomic content, lies in com- prehensive technical training for operators and in considering appro- priate performance recognition for them. Making this decision should be an inescapable corporate respon- sibility and a commitment assumed by managerial and executive levels of petroleum refineries. References 1 Enerdata, World Energy & Climate Statistics – Yearbook 2021 [Online] Available at: https:// yearbook.enerdata.net/co2/emissions-co2- data-from-fuel-combustion.html [Accessed 18 Feb. 2022]. 2 Tianyang Lei, Dabo Guan, Yuli Shan, Bo Zheng, Xi Liang, Jing Meng, Qiang Zhang, Shu Tao, Adaptive CO 2 emissions mitigation strategies of global oil refineries in all age groups, One Earth , 2021; 4 (8) [Online] Available at: www.cell.com/one- earth/ful ltext/S2590-3322(21)00410-3?_ returnURL=https%3A%2F%2Flinkinghub. elsevier.com%2Fretrieve%2Fpii%2FS259 0 3 3 2 2 2 1 004 1 0 3%3 F s h owa l l %3D t r u e [Accessed 10 Feb 2022]. 3 M Ferrara, Optimising processes and operations for CO 2 emissions reduction, Digital Refining, PTQ Q1 2022, 83-89 [Online] Available at https://ptqmagazines. digitalrefining.com/view/473391431/83/ [Accessed 15 Feb. 2022]. 4 J-G Le Floc’h, M Larson, D York, R Ohmes, First principles of energy transition – Part 2, Decarbonisation Technology, Nov 2021, 29-32 [Online] Available at: https://ptqmagazines. digitalrefining.com/view/243602673/59/ [Accessed 12 Feb. 2022]. Euler Jimenez G is an independent advisor and instructor with 40 years of experience in fossil fuels combustion and fired heaters including heater performance improvements, emulsion combustion technologies, and biomass business development. He holds a BS in chemistry (technology) from the Universidad Simon Bolívar, Venezuela and an MSc in advanced chemical engineering from the University of Manchester, UK.
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