Tuesday, May 24, 2016

New Rules Expected to Curtail Gulf Oil Production

The Obama administration finalized new rules it says will improve drilling safety in the Gulf of Mexico, but some experts are saying the regulations will undermine safety. The Interior Department, which is responsible for licensing and regulating oil and gas production on the U.S. outer-continental shelf, unveiled the sweeping new regulations on April 14, 2016. The centerpiece of the new regulations is a plan to monitor the safety of offshore wells. Under the regulations, monitoring of well safety would shift from being located on-site—at the offshore drilling platform—to being stationed at onshore electronic observation centers. The regulations also strictly control the types and amounts of fluids pumped into wells, require redundant safety devices, increase the frequency of inspections of critical emergency equipment—known as blowout preventers—and require offshore operators to take steps to center pipes inside wells when pumping cement into them...more

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