Practical Community Guide on Technical Aspects of Oil and Gas

Published: 06-04-2016

Local communities living in oil-producing regions usually lack learning material that provides them with a basic understanding of the oil and gas industry. With this Practical Guide developed by Cordaid, we hope to counter misunderstandings and improve dialogue in the development of oil and gas projects.

It is expected that by using this guide, local communities, civil society organizations and local governments will acquire a basic understanding of the operations of the oil and gas industry, and thereby be able to engage oil companies and government more effectively and constructively.

Having better-informed communities will help to reduce misunderstandings and/or suspicion, manage expectations, and build trust and confidence between the key stakeholders of oil and gas projects (i.e. communities, civil society, government and companies).

The practical guide covers basic technical aspects of the petroleum industry; mainly the upstream sector, with a general overview of downstream activities. It provides a brief introduction to oil and gas formation and how oil companies get permission to carry out activities. This is followed by how companies search for oil and gas; carry out development, get the oil out of the ground and terminate the project. Finally, the impact of the industry on the environment is described, with a specific focus on the common challenges encountered by local communities living within oil-producing regions.

The guide is specifically designed for facilitators and trainers wanting to raise awareness of local communities in oil and gas producing regions. Relevant activities are described from a non-technical point of view. Safety aspects are clearly highlighted in the form of “cautions”. The material is presented in simple language and is accompanied by illustrations.

This guide should be read and used in conjunction with the forthcoming separate Social Aspects Guide that will focus more on company structures, community organization, potential impacts of oil, gas and mining production, and community–company engagement strategies.

To download the (technical aspects) guide, click here