Research and Development In another technological development, Saudi Aramco is developing new pre-refining processes to desulfurize whole crude oil and produce sweetened oil. This step anticipates that less sweet crude will be available to global markets, and refiners will increasingly need to meet market requirements for lower sulfurcontent clean fuels.
Saudi Aramco’s fuel quality road map, a plan stretching into 2030 for cleaner, higher quality fuels, sends a clear message worldwide that hydrocarbon fuels can meet the most stringent environmental standards. The map sets a timetable for introducing clean fuels meeting ambient air quality standards in the Kingdom’s urban centers. Our cleaner transportation fuels will limit sulfur content and dramatically reduce benzene content and aromatics in gasoline.
Another environmental achievement was funding a third diesel hydrotreater project at Ras Tanura Refinery, which will produce low-sulfur diesel. When the hydrotreater is completed in 2010, emissions from diesel fuel produced in Kingdom will be reduced by 95 percent.
Saudi Aramco’s scientists also unveiled impressive environmental innovations in 2007. Hanaa H. Habboubi, a scientist in the R&D Center’s Biotechnology Group, led studies on genetically modifying bacteria so it can provide a range of services for Saudi Aramco, from reducing sulfur in reservoirs to actually “eating” oil in contaminated soil. Environmental Programs As part of our Environmental Master Plan, in 2007 Saudi “Our good stewardship is reflected in environmental awareness programs to encourage conservation and other environmentally responsible actions.”
‘A new technology called the “Cutting Edge Membrane Bio Reactor” process will raise the reused wastewater proportion to more than 90 percent’
Aramco completed 12 projects valued at almost $1 billion, and 20 more for a total of about $1.87 billion have been approved. Future plans include an additional 10 projects with a total value of $564 million.
Saudi Aramco’s comprehensive groundwater protection program incorporates field sampling and laboratory analytical functions to monitor groundwater quality, and other methodologies to protect human health and the environment.
Saudi Aramco also implemented programs to minimize groundwater consumption and promote reuse of treated wastewater. Currently, more than 72 percent of the company’s sanitary wastewater is recycled for beneficial recycling via tertiary sanitary wastewater treatment facilities in major Saudi Aramco communities. Additionally, a new technology called the “Cutting Edge Membrane Bio Reactor” process will raise the reused wastewater proportion to more than 90 percent within a few years.
Saudi Aramco has established a corporate Energy Management Program with the ambitious goal of improving energy performance by 50 percent by the end of 2010. We’re also collaborating with national and international universities on energy conservation training and research. In another energy management initiative, Saudi Aramco is developing, along with other government agencies, a national energy policy and implementing a Kingdomwide awareness program to improve energy conservation. The company also participated in the Ministry of Water and Electricity’s collaboration with Japan to develop an energy efficiency plan for Saudi Arabia’s residential, commercial and industrial sectors.
As part of ongoing efforts, Saudi Aramco conducted its annual Recycling Awareness Campaign.We also launched the Recycling Website, extended community recycling programs and continued to promote our Water Conservation Program through various media.
The company approved 14 energy conservation initiatives this year that are anticipated to save $27.5 million per year in Saudi Aramco facilities, and 15 more initiatives are under evaluation.