Holistic response planning takes into account all aspects of emergency planning and knits them together into a single plan or emergency response philosophy. Stakeholders, departments, facilities or segments within the same business unit or organization need to work and plan together their approach to handling emergencies as a unified response. This shift of focus, from a traditional philosophy to a fully holistic emergency response approach, captures all aspects of risk mitigation.

Recent global events continue to demonstrate that as a whole, the petrochemical industry has major gaps in its planning and response preparations. No matter which methodology, or combination of methods the organization uses, the time has come for the industry to look more closely at response and the preparations necessary for mitigating potential risks.

An effective stakeholder engagement approach must be adopted and within the body of the paper, one or more of the methods described to develop credible scenarios, identifies the key stakeholders required to engage with the process. It is clear that emergency response planners can no longer function in a vacuum, regardless of the organization's size.

In application to an individual facility, or business segment, an organization must look into how to develop realistic scenarios.

The largest possible emergency situation from a single facility or process, resulting in maximum damage, is considered the worst case scenario. This kind of scenario is considered rare, in contrast to the more likely, and reasonably possible credible case scenario.

Within a holistic emergency response plan, both worst and credible case scenarios are considered, in contrast to focusing on solely the worst case.

Risk analysis, including a detailed risk matrix, is a pivotal element of holistic emergency response planning. An effective and holistic emergency response plan considers all potential scenarios that could affect every internal and external aspect of any business. Once risks have been identified, analyzed and prioritized, for the facility, then mitigation planning needs to be implemented for these identified risks.

Risk mitigation planning involves accepting the existence of the risk. Upper management may then decide to accept the risk as is, without making any special efforts to control the risk, or they may control it by adjusting process parameters, or constraints, to eliminate or reduce the risk.

The aim of the paper is to shift the focus of petrochemical philosophy to a holistic emergency response approach, which captures all aspects of risk mitigation. As previously noted, holistic response planning takes into account all aspects of emergency planning and ties them together into one single plan or emergency response philosophy. Departments, facilities or segments within the same business unit or organization need to work and plan together their approach to handling emergencies as a unified response.

Most important of all, a holistic approach must include all potential impacts of the incident to Responders, Population, Business, Facility, Environment and Infrastructure.

You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.