Oil and Gas Company Lowers EHS Compliance Costs with Enviance Software, ehsAI

Enviance Blog Post: August 8th, 2019

For oil and gas companies, managing EHS compliance requirements is a time-consuming, expensive process. Extracting data from permits and other regulatory documents to give visibility into actionable items can take weeks of manpower, which quickly cuts into a company’s bottom line through diminished employee productivity.

Red Cedar Gathering, a midstream energy company that gathers, treats, and compresses natural gas from more than 1,200 wells across 895 miles of gathering pipeline, understands these challenges all too well. Across that large operating area, Red Cedar Gathering runs 26 facilities over two regulatory jurisdictions with more than 20 Title V and New Source review permits and 60-plus emission units with testing requirements. On top of that, Red Cedar Gathering must comply with all the various regulations.

With its resources widespread and so many permitting and regulation requirements to meet, Red Cedar Gathering needed clear visibility into its compliance program to track daily action items, potential problems, and company-wide trends. Red Cedar Gathering previously extracted this information from these permits and regulations and then tracked through spreadsheets, Word documents, and hard files. However, all that manual work was time consuming and prone to errors. Considering that the EPA collected a total of $1.6 billion in administrative and civil judicial penalties in fiscal 2017, those errors could significantly cost Red Cedar Gathering in regulatory enforcement fines and liabilities.

How AI Reduced EHS Costs

Looking for a better way, Red Cedar Gathering took its first major step in building a more robust EHS compliance program when it implemented Enviance Management System in 2010. While Enviance offered better data visibility and simplified compliance efforts, collecting requirements from permits and other paper-based policy and regulatory documents was still labor intensive. Red Cedar Gathering’s environmental engineers had to manually extract requirements before system configuration and assigning responsibility for compliance obligations.

Recently, Red Cedar Gathering took on a project to transfer permits from Microsoft Word and PDFs into Excel spreadsheets. But soon after Red Cedar Gathering began this time-consuming project, Enviance teamed up with ehsAI, a company that uses machine learning to transform complex environmental documents into succinct digital requirements. Through this partnership, Enviance could now leverage AI to quickly capture complex regulatory permit information and process permits in a uniform way.

Rather than manually transferring data, Red Cedar Gathering sent the permit to ehsAI, which processed and then returned the information in a machine-readable spreadsheet. Using the integration, Red Cedar Gathering transferred those requirements into Enviance Management System to give the team access to their tasks in the field, making it easy to offer transparency into completed tasks and provide formatted reports to regulatory agencies.

Red Cedar Gathering has since processed another project with 10 regulatory documents, eight permits, and five regulations, totaling to just over 1,000 pages of regulatory requirements. Ethan Hinkley, air quality compliance manager at Red Cedar Gathering, recalled previously working on transferring one of these permits to a spreadsheet for three to four days. However, ehsAI processed that same permit for Red Cedar Gathering in just 82 seconds. When considering all the documents that required processing, ehsAI saved Red Cedar Gathering weeks of time, which translated to a huge reduction on labor costs.

“It is critical for us to meet air quality requirements from state, federal, and tribal regulations for all 26 of our facilities," Ethan said. “Enviance and ehsAI provide solutions that help us achieve our goal of being a regional leader while protecting human health and the environment.”

Could AI Help You Lower Your EHS Compliance Costs?

If you’re interested in learning how the integrated Enviance Management System and ehsAI solution can help you save on EHS compliance costs, we’re happy to help. Contact us today to schedule your complimentary demo. You can also view our full webinar on AI and learn more about Red Cedar Gathering’s story here.