Blog 2018

Update on C-NLOPB Activities – Summer 2018
By Scott Tessier, Chair and CEO

July 5, 2018

The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Area has seen several new and continued initiatives by governments in recent months, including:

  • the federal government’s review of environmental assessment and related legislation, which has culminated in Bill C-69, An Act to enact the Impact Assessment Act and the Canadian Energy Regulator Act, to amend the Navigation Protection Act and to make consequential amendments to other Acts;
  • the provincial government’s “Advance 2030 – A Plan for Growth in the Newfoundland and Labrador Oil and Gas Industry”;
  • the federal government’s recent release of the Generation Energy Council’s report “Canada’s Energy Transition: Getting to our Energy Future, Together”; and
  • progress towards regulatory modernization under the joint management framework of the Atlantic Accord Implementation Acts.

Along with our ongoing, world-class regulatory oversight of safety, environmental protection, resource management and local benefits, C-NLOPB staff are deeply engaged in these transformational initiatives and related work on a planned pilot project to conduct a regional assessment of exploratory drilling off Eastern Newfoundland, a project targeting rig intake efficiency, and an examination of subsea tiebacks and small field developments. Our efforts with governments are also focused on finding efficiencies in the local regulatory regime, at the same time enhancing its robustness.

In addition to advancing new administrative working relationships, meaningful engagement with Indigenous peoples has taken on increased priority for governments and we are discussing with them how the Board can best assist in this area.

Operators are busy as well. Hebron is off to a strong start, Hibernia just keeps on producing, Husky is leading the West White Rose Extension Project, Equinor has filed a project description for Bay du Nord with the Canadian Environment Assessment Agency, and Suncor is considering asset life extension for the Terra Nova Floating, Production, Storage and Offloading facility. A number of new exploratory drilling campaigns are being eyed for the 2019-20 timeframe, and seismic data acquisition continues at a high pace, with new and existing entrants demonstrating strong commitments to and interest in the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Area.

Our report on the Enquiry into the March 2017 SeaRose iceberg incident will be made available in the weeks ahead, and our investigation continues into a recent unauthorized discharge of synthetic based mud from the Transocean Barents mobile offshore drilling unit.

As the global petroleum industry slowly emerges from a period of low oil prices and global energy demands continue to grow, we are maintaining a strong focus on training and competency of industry and our own subject matter experts, to ensure among other things that digitalization and remote operations only serve to enhance industry performance in the areas of safety and environmental protection.

Our Industrial Benefits team is keeping abreast of global trends in procurement to ensure optimal local benefits from ongoing and new activities in our Offshore Area. We are redoubling our efforts to ensure that the obligations of operators, contractors and sub-contractors are met in the collective, long-term interest of a strong and globally competitive local supply and service community.

Our staff members are also busy on the international scene, as we continue to engage in the International Regulators Forum (IRF), along with the International Offshore Environmental Petroleum Regulators, International Upstream Forum, HeliOffshore and the North Sea Offshore Authorities Forum. The IRF recently held its Annual General Meeting (AGM) and biannual Safety Conference in Aberdeen, Scotland in conjunction with “Safety30”, an Oil & Gas UK-led international conference that commemorated the 30th anniversary of the Piper Alpha disaster. Presentation material from the conference is available at www.safety30.co.uk and the communiqué from the AGM can be found at www.irfoffshoresafety.com.

Last but not least, we are thrilled to welcome the newest appointee to our Board, Roger Grimes. Roger is well known as the former Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador and has served as the provincial Minister of Natural Resources. He brings a wealth of experience and wise counsel to the team and we look forward to working with him.

That’s a brief overview of what’s happening at the C-NLOPB. Best wishes to all for a safe and happy summer!

Blog 2018

DateUpdate
2018, Jul 5Update on C-NLOPB Activities – Summer 2018
2018, Feb 21Public Disclosure of Incidents