The Bahrain field is located in a desert environment in the south-central area of an island located in the Arabian Gulf. The Kingdom of Bahrain is classified as an archipelago comprised of 33 islands, the largest being Bahrain Island at 55 km (34 mi) long by 18 km (11 mi) wide and 699km2 (269m2) in total area. This 175 km2 (67m2) field which comprises ~25% of the land area in the Kingdom was discovered and developed in the 1930s and is recognized as the first oil field developed in Arabian Gulf.

Tatweer Petroleum took over the operation of the field from the Bahrain Petroleum Company in December 2009 and is currently engaged in a major revitalization project that includes the introduction of conventional production upgrades, straight hole and horizontal drilling as well as enhanced oil recovery operations that include steam, water and other methods of flooding and injection.

The Bahrain Field is a brown-field project and its facilities area highly concentrated with extensive existing above ground pipelines as well as existing oil and gas facilities. As part of the field development plan numerous wells will be drilled and completed. The projected increase in liquid and gas production will require the construction of new facilities, hence the need for Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to optimize the land utilization and facilities construction and overall land management.

The use of GIS is gathering momentum in the Oil and Gas industry as a powerful tool for capturing, storing, manipulating, analyzing and displaying spatially referenced geographic data and information. GIS plays a very important role in Tatweer's business plan and is being utilized to build a comprehensive system integrating multiple "Data Sets" to create a real-time composite view of the entirety of its field operations.

This paper summarizes how Tatweer Petroleum made a conscious business decision to install a specialized GIS system. The system initially served to optimize the surface management by having all the structures inventoried which enabled a more cost effective risk evaluation process for the planning of new structures. Having the environmental data and information uploaded jointly with the existing facilities information aided the organization to better plan for, and optimize, its evolving environmental permit requirements.

Finally, a very important use of the GIS system is associated with the operation of the field and its seamless integration with Tatweer's emergency response process. This feature provides highly accurate information related to location of access roads to any facility within the field and can be received by the field personal through a Global Position System (GPS) device. This reduces the response time in the case of an emergency event where timely access to remote locations during normal operating conditions is critical. Lastly, a diverse GIS database can be a practical one-stop solution to facilitate risk analysis to solve various environmental, land as well as emergency response management issues.

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