This comment by Welaptega founder and CEO Anthony Hall is a response to a Wall Street Journal story carried on the US President’s report on the Macondo spill.

“Do not forget the lives lost in this incident. Do not forget that in pursuit of the petroleum that fuels our societies many thousands of men and women are inevitably exposed to risk by their employers and their government.

“Working offshore, out on the ocean is a risky business and everyone knows that. What they deserve is to be exposed to minimum risk, not unmanaged risk. They deserve to be able to rely on rigorous processes that assess the levels of risks to which they are exposed, they deserve to know that procedures are in place that minimize those risks.

“The oil industry has done a lot to become safer since the early days of offshore production, but despite wake-up calls like the Piper Alpha disaster in the UK North Sea and many less serious incidents it has become complacent and arguably greedy.

“Too often unacceptable risks are allowed to build to save money – to keep drilling and production schedules on track. In an industry that is essential to the economic well-being of the economies of the world, where the the biggest players report astronomical profits quarter-on-quarter, and where the potential for environmental catastrophe and interference with other economic sectors is so high – well frankly, it just isn’t reasonable. This report is a window into this unreasonable situation.

“Many in the industry know this only too well, and this report will give licence to those in positions of influence to insist on budgets and technologies that allow them to meet the reasonable expectations of their colleagues offshore to have a workplace where risks are understood and managed, and more broadly meet the expectations of the rest of us for an unpolluted environment and a reliable and sustainably profitable offshore oil industry. It’s only reasonable.”