US Interior Department proposes reducing offshore-drilling safety regs

30 Dec 2017   Offshore, USA

The Trump administration’s Interior Department proposed Friday regulations that would scale back some of the safety regulations for offshore drilling put into place by the previous administration in the wake of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster.  The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, which regulates offshore drilling, published in the Federal Register a revision of the rule addressing production safety systems, subsurface safety devices and safety device testing.
Among other things, the proposed new rule would rescind the provision that would require operators to submit safety devices such as blowout protectors for certification to third parties before installation.

The proposed change is part of the Interior Department’s efforts to roll back Obama-era safety and environmental regulations on the oil and gas industry as part of the Trump administration goal of achieving “energy dominance without sacrificing safety,” BSEE Director Scott Angelle said in a statement.
Earlier in the week Interior’s Bureau of Land Management had rescinded a rule promulgated under President Barack Obama to regulate hydraulic fracturing on onshore federal and Indian lands.
In another federal action favorable to oil and gas development unveiled between Christmas and New Year’s, BLM released new guidelines affecting management of sage grouse habitat Friday.

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