There is growing concern regarding the environmental impact and associated costs of petroleum based fluid discharges. As environmental enforcement agencies increase pressures and costs for petroleum lubricant spills, many offshore operators are using or considering environmentally safer products. These types of fluids can protect the users against fines, cleanup costs and downtime. But care must be given in selecting the right product for a specific application.
This paper will review the definitions and types of environmentally preferable products and strengths and limitations of each type. It will also review the various definitions of "biodegradable" and the maintenance practices required to prolong the life of the fluid and the equipment.
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