Sunday, May 01, 2011

Offshore regulation could extend to contractors

Sunday, May 01, 2011

WASHINGTON-the Obama management checks whether federal oversight of offshore drilling of oil and gas companies to manipulate to expand suppliers, service providers and other contractors now outside regulators reach oil field.

Michael Bromwich, the Director of the Bureau of ocean energy management, regulation and enforcement, told reporters Tuesday, that the existing system to make artificial restrictions on what can do his agency, safer to offshore drilling.

The power ends now with oil and gas companies, the leases in U.S. waters keep drilling. ", That dramatically restricts the scope of our control," he said.

"It is very important for our regulatory oversight extend as widely as possible for all the entities that operate the offshore and not for us only to be artificially limited each operator, which shall apply to authorisations and sent exploration plans."

"Bromine wich that approach may have seemed adequate, before also almost deadly blowout of BP Macondo before a year - the 11 killed and began a multi-million gallon spill oil - said, but is not compatible with the regulatory agenda, created by the disaster."

"We urge, in an aggressive and are responsibly very interested," said he, "and if that requires us, our scope beyond the operator, this is something that seriously be considered must."Last year's accident legislators and regulators sharpened focus on the wide range of companies in the area of offshore drilling.

According to the Commission, which investigated the oil spill, which began last April 20, the disaster was the result of a series of decisions by BP and its contractors at the site, including Transocean, of which owned the deepwater horizon drilling rig, and Halliburton, the cement work.

Against GOP?Expand all of the ocean energy Bureau regulatory powers would officials likely congressional action, according to a preliminary examination of Interior Department required.

And it seems unlikely that like the Bureau rules is important legislation authority, especially in the House, strengths in which Republicans move to limit the discretion of the Agency.

The Bureau may impose requirements on the equipment used and the work of contractors, but oil and gas companies offshore are ultimately responsible for whether these mandates are met.

No immediate position ", although much of this stuff someone else runs the requirements still apply to the activity," said Erik Milito, upstream Director for the American Petroleum Institute, which authority do not take an immediate position on the expansion of the Agency.

"So far, which is responsible for ultimately, it is the operator in General.

"The Government examine separately as projects take account of company safety records and other factors in weighing their proposed offshore drilling. Bromine wich said the ocean energy Bureau evaluated the evidence "that should factor in whether a company continue to a player" but said there could be disciplinary records, history of violations and past include in fines.

Funding The other government imposed a swathe of new safety and environmental mandates after the deepwater horizon disaster, including a residence requirement companies prove, they have the equipment and crude oil from any future deep sea well blowout use the know-how.

The Ocean can count energy Bureau on a big boost in funding - at least for a few months - among the budget deal reached Congressional leaders and the White House last week.

The legislation, the Government running until the end of the fiscal year 2011 on Sept. 30 to keep includes $ 47 million more for the Bureau when it received in the fiscal year 2010.

That is about half as much as the Administration 2011 wanted to add financial year the Agency's funding, but which thrust came more inspectors amid cuts amounting to $40 billion in many non-defense Programmen.

Einstellung tariff not other units of the internal Department as well as. Funding for the Bureau of land management, the handles onshore oil and gas leases, Administration would be trimmed, for example, $ 18 million from the fiscal 2010 Ebene.

Die has asked Congress for $ 358 million in the fiscal year 2012, the Bureau to rent the 116 new offshore inspectors, Triple what it has now would allow, and 41 new allows almost doubled staff, the current 50-member team.

Much funding proposed by the Government boost would come from proposed new fees on oil and natural gas producers.

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