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January 2, 2018updated 05 Jan 2018 12:17pm

BSEE proposes changes to offshore drilling safety regulations

The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) has put forward changes to safety regulations regarding offshore oil and gas production. 

The US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) has put forward changes to safety regulations regarding offshore oil and gas production.

The proposal comes in response to a Presidential Order to reduce any rules perceived as unnecessary under existing regulations.

The proposed revision to the Production Safety Systems regulations is expected to save the industry $228m over a period of ten years.

BSEE director Scott Angelle said: “I am confident that this revision of the Production Safety Systems Rule moves us forward toward meeting the administration’s goal of achieving energy dominance without sacrificing safety.

“By reducing the regulatory burden on industry, we are encouraging increased domestic oil and gas production while maintaining a high bar for safety and environmental sustainability.”

“There was an assumption made previously that only more rules would increase safety, but ultimately it is not an either/or proposition.”

The Production Safety Systems Rule addresses safety and pollution prevention equipment, subsea safety devices and safety device testing for the production of oil and gas resources on the US Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), BSEE stated.

Angelle added: “It’s time for a paradigm shift in the way we regulate the OCS.

“There was an assumption made previously that only more rules would increase safety, but ultimately it is not an either/or proposition. We can actually increase domestic energy production and increase safety and environmental protection.”

More than 550 million barrels of oil and 1.3 trillion cubic feet of natural gas are produced on the OCS every year.

BSEE permits operations and conducts inspections on close to 2,400 production platforms located in the three OCS regions, including the Arctic, Gulf of Mexico, and Pacific.

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