Registration Opens for 2015 SPE Americas HSE Conference
Registration has opened for the 2015 SPE E&P Health, Safety, Security, and Environmental Conference—Americas. The conference will be held 16–18 March in Denver.
Building on the success of SPE’s 2014 International Conference on Health, Safety, and the Environment, the 2015 conference carries the theme of “Striving for Excellence—It Takes All of Us.” The theme of the international conference, held in Long Beach, California, was “The Journey Continues.”
In an evolutionary step from past conferences, the 2015 conference will give attendees the ability to interact with the conference organizers and steer discussion toward pressing issues. “The 2015 SPE E&P HSSE Americas conference promises to be a dynamic event,” said Sue Staley, conference committee co-chairperson and vice president of safety, environment, and social performance for Shell.
“The use of interactive technology throughout the conference will allow discussions to focus on issues based on audience polling,” Staley said. “Engaging with various stakeholders has become a critical path in the industry, so we’ve designed the conference with that in mind. The technology will allow us to frame the real-time conversations and sessions around the most important issues based on participant input—bringing acute issues to the forefront.”
“We want people to come to the conference prepared to fully engage and make the most of the opportunities offered,” Staley said. “The interactive technology is new and offers an unprecedented ability to really get a lot out of the conference—because participants can direct conversations and topics based on their immediate needs. This isn’t a completed scripted event. We expect people to bring their concerns and issues for discussion.”
In a first for the conference, a Student Challenge is planned that will pit student teams against one another in a contest of knowledge about health, safety, and environment matters. The quiz-style contest, modeled off the PetroBowl contest held at SPE’s Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition each year, will have eight teams. Each team will be made of five students from environmental or engineering departments of selected regional universities. Unlike PetroBowl, which is a single-elimination contest, the Student Challenge will be based on a point system, with the team having the most points at the end of the competition being the winner.
The winning team will become part of another first for the conference—a movie night. The Student Challenge winners will form a panel to help lead discussion after a presentation of a film about Pinedale, Wyoming, and the effects the oil and gas industry has had on the tiny town. “Energy’s Crossroads: Pinedale, WY,” one of the latest movies in the acclaimed Rational Middle Energy Series documentary series, tells the story of a small Wyoming town as shale gas development opens up a new world of opportunity and challenge. The series has won praise from energy companies, policy makers, and academics for its thoughtful discussion of the facts of modern energy development.
“In addition to the traditional technical paper presentations, we’ve added a movie night that will provide a unique perspective into a rational conversation about energy issues that can easily translate into project delays and additional—often unexpected—costs,” Staley said.
Jennifer Cross, a sociology professor at Colorado State University and invited speaker on sustainability, will open the movie night. She will share insights from her work on changing behaviors and ways that the industry can improve the effectiveness of communication. Her presentation and the movie screening will be followed by an interactive session with the student panel moderated by Cross.
The conference will also present a new method for delivering ePoster presentations—the World Café format. The World Café is a structured event where groups of three ePoster authors will each deliver a 10-minute presentation followed by a personal 15-minute discussion with the authors at assigned tables. Four ePoster World Café sessions will be offered during the conference, each supporting the conference’s theme of “Striving for HSE Excellence–It Takes All of Us.”