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Energy Tomorrow Blog

Offshore Energy: 10 Key Ways Operations Have Been Strengthened

safe operations  safety standards  offshore drilling safety  bsee  regulations  spill 

Erik Milito

Erik Milito
Posted April 17, 2019

With the Trump administration nearing release of a new five-year offshore leasing plan for oil and natural gas, offshore energy has never been safer or stronger – thanks to initiatives and technologies designed to enhance worker safety and protect the environment. (See this post dispelling offshore energy myths.) Below, 10 important developments that have strengthened the vitally important work of harnessing America’s offshore energy.

1. Center for Offshore Safety

The Center for Offshore Safety (COS) is an industry-led initiative to promote continuous safety improvement for offshore drilling, completions and operations through effective leadership, communication, teamwork, disciplined management systems and independent third-party auditing and certification. 

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Safe or Safer Offshore Regulatory Compliance, Part 2

offshore safety  bsee  offshore technology  innovation  spill 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted March 7, 2019

In this post last week we explained how alternative measures, approved by federal officials, may be used to comply with the 2016 well control rule, as well as all regulatory requirements associated with offshore oil and natural gas development. …

Now the federal Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) is chiming in – not surprising, since the agency’s integrity was besmirched. In a letter to members of Congress this week, Lars Herbst, BSEE’s Gulf of Mexico Outer Continental Shelf regional director, called the regulatory provision for alternative procedures or equipment “long-standing,” having been granted by the previous administration as well as the current one. Herbst writes that “zero” waivers have been granted by BSEE regarding the well control rule.


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Safe or Safer Offshore Regulatory Compliance

offshore safety  safe operations  bsee  offshore technology  innovation  spill 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted February 28, 2019

Months before the federal offshore well control rule went into effect in July 2016, API told Congress the safety regulation could actually increase risks associated with offshore oil and natural gas development – that its rigid requirements could stifle innovation and thwart the effectiveness of new operational technologies.

The 2016 rule is an example of “prescriptive” regulation, a one-size-fits-all approach that requires certain processes, procedures and tests. It was and is the wrong approach for offshore safety – mainly because every oil and natural gas well has different characteristics: geology, depth, water pressure and temperature and other variables that factor into developing the best safety plan for a particular well.

In that context offshore operators seek government-approved alternative compliance paths – which they’ve done since the rule’s launch in 2016, when the Obama administration was in charge of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), the overseer of offshore safety. Indeed, the requests show the rule needs fixing.

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The Offshore Energy Safety Imperative

offshore energy  offshore safety  offshore technology  bsee  north carolina  south carolina  virginia  spill 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted August 10, 2017

As the Trump administration weighs opening the Mid-Atlantic outer continental shelf to future oil and natural gas development, a number of people who work and live in coastal areas appropriately question whether offshore energy can be developed safely, without undue risks. The answer is yes.

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Continuing the Offshore Safety Discussion

offshore safety  oil and natural gas production  bsee  regulation  safe operations 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted December 2, 2015

A couple of important takeaways from this week’s Capitol Hill hearing on a proposed federal well control rule for offshore drilling:

First, offshore drilling is safer today than it has ever been – for the Gulf of Mexico, Alaska and Pacific regions. In coordination with federal regulators, industry has improved the safety of offshore development – in terms of safety systems management, prevention and response – while advancing the nation’s energy security through continued offshore oil and natural gas production.

This is seen in the approximately 275 API exploration and production standards that include offshore operations, more than 100 of which have been incorporated into federal regulation. 

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Dialogue is Key to Getting Offshore Well Control Rule Right

analysis  gulf of mexico  center for offshore safety  offshore safety  offshore operations  industry standards  bop  bsee  job growth 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 14, 2015

Safe, responsible energy development in the Gulf of Mexico is vital to the U.S. economy and job growth, as well as U.S. energy and national security. Each of these points likely will come up during a U.S. House Natural Resources Committee hearing on the impact of federal policies on energy production and economic growth in the Gulf, Tuesday in New Orleans.

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