Corrosion Management Systems

What is a Corrosion Management System?

NACE International defines a corrosion management system (CMS) as “the documented set of processes and procedures required for planning, executing, and continually improving the ability of an organization to manage the threat of corrosion for existing and future assets and asset systems.”

A CMS is the framework for integrating sound corrosion technology and mature management practices in order to efficiently and effectively manage corrosion to protect assets and asset systems, increase organizational return on investment (ROI), and achieve broader organizational goals, such as public service and public safety.

Benefits of a Corrosion Management System

Any facility owner or operator – public or private – stands to reap significant benefits through the implementation of an optimized Corrosion Management System. By extension, the end users and other stakeholders they serve will benefit from better and more reliable service, reduced risks to health and environment, and more robust local economies better positioned for growth and prosperity.

The power of a CMS is its comprehensive and consistent approach that aligns objectives and efforts at every level of the organization, from senior management to contractors tasked with carrying out the prevention and mitigation procedures called for in the corrosion control plan. By aligning all facets of the organization and creating a common and agreed-upon understanding of asset protection challenges and solutions, the CMS

  • Allows an organization to prioritize, monitor, and maintain the integrity of an asset throughout its entire lifecycle, from design to decommissioning and demolition.
  • Integrates with an organization’s existing asset integrity management system (AIMS) in order to facilitate a fully coordinated organizational response accountable to organizational objectives and stakeholder input. (This can be especially critical to public utilities.)
  • Controls and optimizes all critical elements and pathways for corrosion prevention and mitigation, including risk assessment, technical analysis, work plans, and individual procedures and practices.
  • Provides for the effective communication of asset protection processes, goals, and expectations to contractors, regulators, members of the public, and other external stakeholders.
  • Creates efficiencies and increases ROI through process standardization and continual improvement.
  • Promotes the application of industry best practices organization-wide and facilitates the communication of standards and best practices between organizations.

Components of a Corrosion Management System

In its landmark IMPACT (International Measures of Prevention, Application, and Economics of Corrosion Technologies) Study, NACE identified a hierarchy of elements essential to an effective CMS. These elements include those common to all asset management systems (organizational policy, strategy, and objectives; and enablers, controls, and measures), as well as those specific to corrosion work (plans, procedures, and working practices). Organizational policy, strategy, and objectives determine the approach – from both mission and cost perspectives – that the organization adopts, promulgates, and maintains with regards to asset and asset systems management.

In managing enablers, controls, and measures with respect to corrosion control, the organization defines and documents the roles, responsibilities, and qualification standards of each organizational component and the specific personnel involved in the development, implementation, and improvement of the CMS.

Plans, procedures, and working practices encompass all corrosion-specific activities that fall within the scope of the CMS, including the implementation approach, verification and inspection processes, and mitigation procedures.

Putting in place all recommended elements optimizes the CMS and ensures adherence and consistent application across all organizational nodes. Detailed information on all CMS components is available from NACE.

Developing and Implementing a Corrosion Management System

NACE has created a comprehensive guidance document that can be used as a work plan for developing and implementing an effective CMS. The document explains each aspect of the CMS, each developmental step, and each concept encompassed within the system.

“Whether it is a pipeline, an airplane, a water treatment plant or highway bridge, corrosion prevention and control is essential to avoiding catastrophic events before it’s too late.”
– Bob Chalker, CEO, NACE International

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