The petroleum industry is one of the largest industries in the world and plays a pivotal part in driving a nation’s economy. However, the exploration and exploitation of heavy crude oil have raised series of environmental challenges and caused increased concern for the communities where the oil refineries are cited. Activities such as gas flaring and oil spillage have led to the release of toxic organic and inorganic pollutants, which has resulted in acid rain, climate change, and contamination of soil, water, and air. These environmental hazards have caused adverse effects directly or indirectly to the ecosystem. This chapter offers a general overview of the processes involved in the processing and some of the potential environmental challenges associated with heavy crude oil processing.
Part of the book: Processing of Heavy Crude Oils