Oil & Gas – Midstream

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Current language: English
Oil & Gas - Midstream industry entities transport or store natural gas, crude oil and refined petroleum products. Midstream natural gas activities involve gathering, transporting and processing natural gas from the wellhead, such as the removal of impurities, production of natural gas liquids, storage, pipeline transport and shipping, liquefaction, or regasification of liquefied natural gas. Midstream oil activities mainly involve transporting crude oil and refined products using pipeline networks, truck and rail, and marine transport on tankers or barges. Entities that operate storage and distribution terminals, as well as those that manufacture and install storage tanks and pipelines, are also part of this industry.

Relevant Issues (5 of 26)

Why are some issues greyed out? The SASB Standards vary by industry based on the different sustainability-related risks and opportunities within an industry. The issues in grey were not identified during the standard-setting process as the most likely to be useful to investors, so they are not included in the Standard. Over time, as the ISSB continues to receive market feedback, some issues may be added or removed from the Standard. Each company determines which sustainability-related risks and opportunities are relevant to its business. The Standard is designed for the typical company in an industry, but individual companies may choose to report on different sustainability-related risks and opportunities based on their unique business model.

Disclosure Topics

What is the relationship between General Issue Category and Disclosure Topics? The General Issue Category is an industry-agnostic version of the Disclosure Topics that appear in each SASB Standard. Disclosure topics represent the industry-specific impacts of General Issue Categories. The industry-specific Disclosure Topics ensure each SASB Standard is tailored to the industry, while the General Issue Categories enable comparability across industries. For example, Health & Nutrition is a disclosure topic in the Non-Alcoholic Beverages industry, representing an industry-specific measure of the general issue of Customer Welfare. The issue of Customer Welfare, however, manifests as the Counterfeit Drugs disclosure topic in the Biotechnology & Pharmaceuticals industry.
General Issue Category
(Industry agnostic)

Disclosure Topics (Industry specific) for: Oil & Gas – Midstream

GHG Emissions
  • Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    The Midstream industry generates significant greenhouse gases and other air emissions from compressor engine exhausts, oil and condensate tank vents, natural gas processing, and fugitive emissions, in addition to emissions from mobile sources. GHG emissions contribute to climate change and create incremental regulatory compliance costs and risks for Midstream entities. At the same time, the management of methane fugitive emissions has emerged as a significant operational, reputational and regulatory risk. Financial effects on entities will vary depending on the specific location of operations and prevailing emissions regulations, and they include increased operating or capital expenditures and regulatory or legal penalties. Entities that capture and monetise emissions, or cost-effectively reduce emissions by implementing innovative monitoring and mitigation efforts and fuel efficiency measures, may enjoy substantial financial benefits. Entities can reduce regulatory risks and realise operational efficiencies as regulatory and public concerns about air quality and climate change increase.
Air Quality
  • Air Quality

    Air emissions from Oil & Gas – Midstream entities include air pollutants, which can create significant and localised environmental or health risks. Of particular concern are sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions. The financial consequences entities face from air emissions vary depending on the specific locations of operations and the prevailing air emissions regulations. Amid increasing regulatory and public concerns about air quality, active air quality management through technological and process improvements could allow entities to mitigate the adverse financial effects of regulations. Entities could benefit from operational efficiencies that may result in a lower cost structure over time.
Ecological Impacts
  • Ecological Impacts

    The storage and transport of crude oil, natural gas and related products through a vast system of maritime transportation vehicles, pipelines, trains and trucks presents considerable risks to the environment and local communities. Leaks, accidental discharges, pipeline rights-of-way and open easements over ecologically sensitive land could negatively impact ecosystems in several ways, including natural habitat loss and changes in species movement. To protect endangered species and ecologically sensitive areas, jurisdictional legal and regulatory authorities may require development and decommissioning plans that mitigate or remediate potential ecological impacts prior to project approval. Together with regulatory compliance costs, these plans may require significant capital and operational expenditures. As concerns over ecological impacts increase, greenfield and existing developed sites may be designated as protected areas under new laws or the enforcement of existing laws. Entities that effectively manage ecological impacts may avoid project delays, remediation and litigation liabilities, and could gain easier access to new projects and sources of revenue.
Competitive Behaviour
  • Competitive Behaviour

    Entities that own natural gas pipelines and storage facilities face numerous and constantly changing regulations in all aspects of their operations, including the rates charged, common carrier access and new facility siting and construction. Many pipelines and terminals enjoy natural monopolies, and regulations ensure that entities do not abuse this position through unfair pricing, discriminatory service or by other means. Because of concerns about the effects of oil and gas market distortions on consumers and businesses, market manipulation regulations could also affect entities in the Midstream industry. Prospective rate changes, compensation payments or regulatory penalties for violating regulations governing competitive behaviour may adversely affect entities. Midstream entities face uncertainty regarding their ability to change the rates charged, which could affect their ability to recover higher costs.
Critical Incident Risk Management
  • Operational Safety, Emergency Preparedness & Response

    Entities in the Oil & Gas – Midstream industry operate a vast network of assets at risk of spills and accidents. Any incident that results in unintended hydrocarbon releases could have severe impacts on the environment, employees and local communities. Because of these concerns, applicable jurisdictional legal and regulatory authorities may implement new safety regulations related to pipeline and rail operations. Significant events may result in large one-time costs from fines and corrective actions, and contingent liabilities for remediation or legal damages. These factors also could impair an entity’s social licence to operate. As demonstrated by investigations of past incidents, an entity that develops a strong safety culture and establishes a thorough and systematic approach to safety and risk management may minimise such risks. This includes emergency preparedness and response and operational integrity within the entity and in its external relationships with contractors.

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