Presentation on theme: "Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany Developing a way forward Horst Rakel, Mark Hailwood, Christiane Kühl."— Presentation transcript:
Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany Developing a way forward Horst Rakel, Mark Hailwood, Christiane Kühl
Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany Literature Review German implementation of the Seveso II Directive International approaches Four leading companies – practical examples A way forward ?
Literature Review Origins of risk communication –Communication as a reaction to increased criticism of technology / public protest against large-scale technological projects. –strongly linked with the nuclear and chemical industries in the final quarter of the 20th century. –increasingly linked to other technological developments, e.g. waste incineration, transport infrastructure, electro-magnetic radiation, GMO-food. Types of risk communication –Passive Information –Active Information –Dialogue –Participation –Mediation Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Literature Review (2) Principles –Trust as a cornerstone of effective risk communication –Risk perception Catastrophic potential Voluntary Dread Familiarity Fair distribution Expert vs. Layperson –Risk communication is a process Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Requirements of the Major hazards legislation Seveso II Directive (96/82/EG) Major Accident Ordinance (Störfall-Verordnung) –Risk communication is not mentioned in either the European directive or the national legislation –However a number of requirements describe: Written documentation Information Consultation processes Reporting of accidents – This leads to the conclusion that risk communication activities are essential. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Requirements of the Major hazards legislation (2) Notification: This basic, written information which informs the authorities about the activities, the hazardous substances and their amounts, and the immediate neighbourhood of the establishment. Major Accident Prevention Policy: This is a written document which sets out the company policy. It must be communicated to the employees to achieve an effective implementation. Safety Report: This is a written document which demonstrates to the authorities that the hazards have been identified correctly, the risks assessed and appropriate measures to limit the effects of major accidents have been taken. This document must be made available to the public. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Requirements of the Major hazards legislation (3) Information on the correct measures in an emergency: The operator is required to provide information in an appropriate form for those who could be affected by a major accident. The legislation requires more than just a list of measures. Information on the activities, chemicals and hazards at the site must be provided. Emergency Planning: Internal plans must be developed with the involvement of the employees. Internal and external emergency plans must be co-ordinated. This requires a dialogue between the parties involved. External plans must involve the public in a consultation process. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches Great Britain –Joint associations of operators and authorities (e.g. Humber Chemical Focus [http://www.humberchemicalfocus.com], Severnside Emergency Planning Forum [http://www.bristol-city.gov.uk/ccm/content/Advice-Benefits/ Emergencies/comah.en]). Use of the Internet as well as printed media for distributing information. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches Great Britain contd. –“Preparing for Emergencies” as national activity for civil emergencies, including chemical accidents. Clear message “Go in, stay in, tune in” Booklet available in 18 different languages. [http://www.preparingforemergencies.gov.uk] –Targeting particular groups (e.g. “Crucial Crew” in the Humber area). Information and training aids including a computer role playing game to train safe behaviour in children. [http://www.crucial-crew.org] Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches (2) Netherlands –“Burenraad”: a neighbourhood advisory council in the vicinity of a major hazard site. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches (2) Netherlands contd. –Risk mapping: Each Dutch Province is required to produce and publish a risk map. The risk map shows the external risks due to major accident hazards, transport of hazardous substances, natural disasters. [http://www.risicokaart.nl] Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches (3) Switzerland –“Risikokataster” – risk mapping allows an overview of the hazard and risk “hot-spots” and thus an effective priority setting. Directed towards neighbouring cantons, canton authorities, communities, emergency services, engineering consultants, local population [http://www.geo-bs.ch/stadtplan_gefahrenkataster_karte.cfm? &Zoom=2000&Type=gefahrenkataster] Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches (3) Switzerland contd. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
International approaches (3) Switzerland contd. –Local neighbourhood newspaper e.g. “Rhy Möwe” in Basle, 4 times a year, 50 000 copies [http://www.c-public.com/index6fb5.html?id=31] Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany Rhy Möwe Die «Rhy-Möwe» ist die Nachbarschaftszeitung für die Quartieranlieger der Stadtbasler Werke von Ciba Spezialitätenchemie, Syngenta und Novartis. Sie erscheint vierteljährlich in einer Auflage von mehr als 40’000 Exemplaren. Die Publikation hiess anfangs «Quartierzeitung» und wurde erstmals im Jahr 1991 als Reaktion auf das Brandereignis bei der damaligen Sandoz im Werk Schweizerhalle lanciert.
International approaches (3) Switzerland contd. –Kommission für Risikobeurteilung des Kantons Basel-Stadt (RISIKO) A commission with a broad membership which has the task of advising the government and administration. Assists in risk decisions and brings scientific facts and individual perception together Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Experience in Germany Individual Highlights –Community Advisory Panel / Kontaktgruppe Bürger-Dow (Dow Deutschland) In existence since 1991 in Rheinmünster (SW Germany), since 1993 in Stade (N. Germany) –Community Advisory Panel (BASF) since 2000 in Ludwigshafen, Germany –Sicherheitsdialog (Bayer Industry Services) ca. 1100 visitors (43 target groups) in 2004 48 infomobil events experimental lectures “Fascination Chemistry” Theatre on “Safety Dialogue” with over 700 school children. Medical professionals (local doctors, paediatricians) directly informed of all chemical releases. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Experience in Germany (2) General experiences –Larger, often international companies are generally aware that contact with the local community is important and provide resources for these activities. –Companies which have direct contact with their local communities document a high level of acceptance in those communities (trust). –No general “best practice” documented, a wide range of activities and practices to be found. –Information provided to the public on the correct measures in an emergency tends in general to fulfil the legal requirements, however there seems to be a lack of assessment of requirements or effectiveness. The multi-cultural society in which we live is not always adequately reflected in the information. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
A way forward? - Possible solutions Documentation of risks –Risk mapping is a useful tool to visualize a situation, however the information needs to be presented to the public without creating security risks (terrorism / malicious acts). –Written documents need to be presented in a form so that they are accessible, understandable (language!) and comprehensible by a large section of the affected neighbourhood. Best Practices –“Best practices” need to be developed, which allow SMEs to communicate effectively. The resources required to identify hazards, assess risks and communicate effectively are often not available “in house” in small companies. –A Risk Communication Toolbox could be developed which addresses these problems. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
A way forward? - Possible solutions (2) Risk Dialogue –Public authorities need to develop an understanding for risk as opposed to the current “rule-based” approach. This will however require training for inspectors and licensing authorities –Companies need to move from a “compliance orientated” approach towards a “risk management” approach. Possible changes to the legal framework need to be considered Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
A way forward? - Possible solutions (3) Risk Dialogue contd. –“Trust-Communities” encompassing authorities, operators and neighbourhoods need to be developed. Building trust requires transparency of decision making processes and access not only to information, but also to a communication forum. –Risk Communication is a process. This means, amongst others, that objectives, roles and responsibilities have to be clearly defined (and assigned). Adequate resources have to be allocated and personnel properly qualified and empowered. Mechanisms to evaluate progress, elicit feedback and facilitate continual improvement are also indispensable components of successful risk communication processes. Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
Thank you for your attention. Questions ? Risk Communication for Major Accident Hazards in Germany
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