NOIA Welcomes Drilling Guidelines, Hopes for Prompt Permit Approvals

           

For Immediate Release:                                                      Contact:  Michael Kearns

Wednesday, December 13, 2010                                          (202) 347-6900          

 

 

NOIA Welcomes Drilling Guidelines, Hopes for Prompt Permit Approvals

 

Today, the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) issued additional guidance regarding the steps required of operators to resume deepwater activity.

 

NOIA President Randall Luthi offered the following observations on the release:

 

“We in the industry are all pleased to receive further clarification from the folks at BOEMRE. Before today, many permit applications were unable to be finished and submitted for review as different companies got different informal feedback about what information would be required under new and evolving regulations. The uncertainty, confusion and lack of consistency have been the principal problems.”

 

“It is our hope that today’s document will provide additional information for companies to be able to finish and submit their applications for permits to drill (APD’s).“

 

“We also hope that BOEMRE will continue to work on providing additional clarity on other issues, such as developing a comprehensive list of which activities will require the completion of environmental assessments, whether categorical exclusions will be considered for use again in the future, and what subsea containment capacities must be in place to allow drilling activity to resume. More questions like these are certain to arise in the coming days as our member companies begin to evaluate these new guidelines in detail, we will see whether these are practicable and achievable requirements. As they say, the devil is in the details.”

 

“We also hope that the issuance of these guidelines indicates a commitment from BOEMRE to turn around and approve those APD’s in a timely manner. With tens of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in capital on the line, the offshore energy industry is anxious to get back to work. We hope today marks an important step in that direction.”

 

 

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NOIA is the only national trade association representing all segments of the offshore industry with an interest in the exploration and production of both traditional and renewable energy resources on the nation’s outer continental shelf.  The NOIA membership comprises more than 270 companies engaged in business activities ranging from producing to drilling, engineering to marine and air transport, offshore construction to equipment manufacture and supply, telecommunications to finance and insurance.