National Offshore Petroleum Regulatory Reforms
In early 2011, the Commonwealth Government committed to expand the role of the National Offshore Petroleum Safety Authority (NOPSA) to include integrity and environment management to become the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environment Management Authority (NOPSEMA) and also to create the National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator (NOPTA) by 1 January 2012. These two regulators deal only with projects in Commonwealth Waters.
NOPSEMA is an independent, Statutory Authority, while NOPTA is a branch within the Resources Division of the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism (Cwth).
On 1 January 2012, the role of the Designated Authority (DA) ceased to exist with the introduction of the newly created National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator (NOPTA). Because of the regulatory change, the role of the Joint Authority (JA) member in Western Australia has also changed.
The Petroleum Division of the Department of Mines and Petroleum (DMP) still plays a major role in ensuring that titles and activities under the Commonwealth Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act 2006 (OPGGSA06) are managed in a way that is not detrimental to safety and the environment or any other interest that may impact on WA. The Divsion continues to operate as a delegate for the WA Minister for Mines and Petroleum, who is the WA member of the JA, and provides ongoing advice and support to the Minister.
As the delegate for the WA JA, the Petroleum Division is responsible for:
- receiving information and advice from NOPTA which is responsible for managing and administering OPGGSA titles;
- providing fully informed advice on title approvals to the WA member of the JA;
- ensuring that the State Minister is kept fully informed and advised on all policy matters relating to Commonwealth offshore activities;
- ensuring the effective transition of responsibilities and knowledge to NOPTA; and
- ensuring the Commonwealth offshore activities do not adversely impact on activities in State areas.
On average the WA JA makes approximately 300 decisions annually under the OPGGSA.
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
A Memorandum of Understanding between the Commonwealth and Western Australian Government Ministers has been signed. This MoU formalises cooperative arrangements between the two Governments with regard to offshore petroleum administration and regulation
Executive Liaison Committee (ELC)
As part of the cooperative arrangements between the two Governments with regard to offshore petroleum administration and regulation, the MOU provided for the establishment of an Executive Liaison Committee (ELC).
The Executive Liaison Committee will provide advice on cooperative working arrangements and issues. The Committee held its first meeting on 14 March 2012.
The Committee has agreed that initial cooperative activity will be through two Working Groups, Coordination of Titles and Permissioning Documents. These Working Groups will make recommendations to the Committee for review and endorsement by the appropriate agency.
The Executive Liaison Committee will:
- Share information;
- Seek advice from members and/or invitees;
- Discuss matters of mutual interest;
- Progress cross jurisdictional issues;
- Coordinate recommendations provided on cross jurisdictional issues;
- Review recommendations of Working Groups; and
- Provide advice through their respective reporting channels to their Ministers.
Commonwealth offshore titles administration:
Detailed information is available on the National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator website. Information regarding transitional agreement and changes to Commonwealth offshore titles administration can be obtained from the relevant staff on the National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator contact list.
Commonwealth offshore safety and environment:
Information regarding transitional arrangements and changes to Commonwealth offshore titles administration can be obtained from NOPSEMA by phoning (08) 6188 8700, or refer to the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environment Management Authority website.
General questions relating to petroleum regularly reform at DMP:
Information regarding general queries or questions on the National Offshore Petroleum Regulatory Reform can be obtained by emailing: email@example.com or refer to the Department of Mines and Petroleum website.
Provides information about the drivers for the Federal Government’s decision to initiate these reforms.
The reforms will require a number of legislative amendments, briefings with industry and other changes.
More information about the reforms is available from a list of frequently asked questions.