Increased energy demands and innovations in upstream oil and natural gas (ONG) extraction technologies have enabled the United States to become one of the world’s leading producers of petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbons. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) lists 187 hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) that are known or suspected to cause cancer or other serious health effects. Several of these HAPs have been measured at elevated concentrations around ONG sites, but most have not been studied in the context of upstream development. In this review, we analyzed recent global peer-reviewed articles that investigated HAPs near ONG operations to (a) identify HAPs associated with upstream ONG development, (b) identify their specific sources in upstream processes, and (c) examine the potential for adverse health outcomes from HAPs emitted during these phases of hydrocarbon development.
Link to full article: https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev-publhealth-040218-043715