Issues Within the Permian Basin Due to Oil Production

Published: 2021-06-17 09:47:48
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Category: Problems

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The Permian Basin poses many challenges and potential problems in terms of oil production, but none more prominent than the risks and effects of newer, under qualified workers and employees joining the oil field in a time of prosperity for the oil field. This problem includes but is not limited to the effects on the economy, safety concerns, as well as problems within the infrastructure of the Permian basin. There is no doubt that a booming oil field means a time of great wealth and incoming population to the Permian Basin, however there is a price to be paid for such a luxury.
First and foremost, safety should always be a factor to strive for in any industry, however the oil field may fall short in this area, with and estimated 120 deaths per year with many more injured according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Many factors come into play that have a negative impact on the level of safety when producing oil, however undertrained or under qualified workers create a job site that can be hazardous for anybody working. When producing oil, there are many large moving parts, and heavy machinery is consistently being used, when the workers are not used to using such machinery, accidents happens. With this being said, of course there is training and safety regulations put in place by the individual companies, as well as agencies such as the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, or OSHA. However, with a plethora on incoming newbies that have no experience in an industry such as oil and gas, the risk factor increases dramatically. These newbies come from everywhere in the united states, but even more so from the Permian basin, where Students in high school see the quick money that can be made in the oil field, and jump on board. This poses many problems within itself such as a lack of fundamental education that is learned in high school, as well as of course the added dangers of having under developed and immature kids doing the job of a professional. While this can be argued many ways, the fact of the matter is that companies will still hire these people because of the need of labor. The company will continue to train these men and women, but this will be the first time they are ever exposed to work of this kind, and due to this, risk is increased.The oil field is a dangerous field to work in, and even with added safety, it will continue to be such. A simple way to decrease this risk would be high school courses for students that do intend to go into the oil field immediately following graduation and do not plan to go to college. Certain schools have programs such as in Ector county that allow kids in high school to learn the fundamentals to become mechanics, Licensed Vocational Nurses, and even cosmetologists, however nothing to prep them for the oil field. If such a program existed within our schools, there would be an incentive to stay in high school for those that need to begin working directly after graduation. Within this, OSHA safety standards could be taught, as well as job prep and skills that are needed for the field.

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