Marathon Petroleum Company took two of the top honours at the Benkert Awards. The US Coast Guard presented the environmental protection awards at a virtual ceremony.

Each year the Coast Guard receives roughly 10 award applications, each of which is reviewed and scored by a committee. Marathon’s Storage and Logistics Terminals won the silver award based on measures the corporation took to reduce both water and air pollution.

To decrease the potential of an oil spill, Marathon installed spray-proof flange wraps where flanges hang over the edge of docks, relocating underwater flanges and removing stress to hose connections. The company also worked to prevent air emissions, including using optical gas imaging systems to ensure all terminals are checked for vapor leaks. In 2018 and 2019, the company used forward-looking infrared cameras to allow on-site technicians to repair leaking seals.

Marathon has also developed wildlife habitat on company property, participated in various regulatory trainings and supported community environmental efforts. One initiative that stood out, Kaplan said, was a partnership with Florida Energy Authority in Jacksonville, Fla., to build an underwater fence to prevent manatees from being attracted to warm water discharges.

Another example of a notable Marathon project included in the silver award was when Marathon drilled its proficiency in the incident command system and sub-area response plans as part of a terminals exercise in Weirton, W.Va., Marathon Petroleum Communications Director Jamal Kheiry said.

For its honourable mention award, Marathon’s Marine Transportation division implemented, among other accomplishments, a monitoring system of all its towing vessels and barges to track operational parameters and their conditions in real time, thereby reducing the potential of a critical failure that could result in a spill.

The other award winners were: Osprey, Alaska Maritime Prevention & Response Network; gold, Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, SERVS and Valdez Marine Terminal; silver, Marathon Petroleum Company’s Storage and Logistics Terminals; bronze, Maersk Line Ltd.; and honorable mention, Seaspan Corporation and Marathon Petroleum Company’s Marine Transportation division.

“It’s an opportunity for companies to promote what they have done above and beyond the regulatory requirements to ensure they operate in an environmentally sound manner,” Galia Kaplan, Benkert Award Program manager for the Coast Guard, said of the awards.

She added, “It’s a good platform for them to promote what they do and be proud of their accomplishments.”

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29th May 2020