REGULATIONS RELATING TO
CONDUCTING PETROLEUM ACTIVITIES
(THE ACTIVITIES REGULATIONS)
(Last amended 15 December 2016, cf. page 5)
Petroleum Safety Authority Norway
Norwegian Environment Agency
Norwegian Directorate of Health
Norwegian Food Safety Authority
Regulations relating to conducting petroleum activities (the activities regulations)
Regulations relating to conducting petroleum activities (the Activities Regulations).
Stipulated by the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway on 29 April 2010 in pursuance of Section 10-18 of the Act of 29 November 1996 No. 72 relating to the petroleum activities, Sections 1-3, 2-2, 3-2, 3-3, 3-5, 4-2, 4-3, 4-5 and 4-6 of the Act of 17 June 2005 No. 62 relating to working environment, working hours and job protection, etc. and Section 68, first subsection litera c of the Regulations of 12 February 2010 No. 158 relating to health, safety and the environment in the petroleum activities, etc.
Stipulated by the Norwegian Environment Agency on 29 April 2010 in pursuance of Sections 9, 40 and 42 of the Act of 13 March 1981 No. 6 relating to protection against pollution and relating to waste and Section 4 of the Act of 11 June 1976 No. 79 relating to control of products and consumer services and Section 68, first subsection litera c of the Regulations of 12 February 2010 No. 158 relating to health, safety and the environment in the petroleum activities, etc.
Stipulated by the Norwegian Directorate of Health on 29 April 2010 in pursuance of Section 16, second subsection and Section 76, final subsection of the Act of 2 July 1999 No. 64 relating to health personnel, Section 1-2, third subsection and Section 8-4 of the Act of 5 August 1994 No. 55 relating to protection against contagious illnesses, and Section 68, first subsection litera c of the Regulations of 12 February 2010 No. 158 relating to health, safety and the environment in the petroleum activities, etc.
Stipulated by the Norwegian Food Safety Authority on 29 April 2010 in pursuance of Sections 16 and 23 of the Act of 19 December 2003 No. 124 relating to food production and food safety, etc. and Section 68, first subsection litera c of the Regulations of 12 February 2010 No. 158 relating to health, safety and the environment in the petroleum activities, etc. Amended 28 June 2012. Amended 20 December 2012. Amended 23 December 2013. Amended 16 December 2014. Amended 18 December 2015. Last amended 15 December 2016.
These regulations apply to offshore petroleum activities, with exceptions as mentioned in Section 4 of the Framework Regulations.
Requirements in these regulations also apply to activities related to facilities and other equipment necessary to conduct manned underwater operations from vessels.
Section 7 of the Framework Regulations applies correspondingly to these regulations.
Definitions as mentioned in Section 6 of the Framework Regulations apply correspondingly to these regulations.
A coordinating working environment committee shall be established for each field, or, where all parties are in agreement, a coordinating working environment committee that covers several fields, where these have shared management and operations organisations, shared contractors and contracts, and where considerable personnel groups work on several of these fields. A joint, local working environment committee shall also be established for each individual mobile facility. The committees shall coordinate and process matters concerning safety and the environment, cf. Section 34, second subsection of the Framework Regulations.
Employer and employee representatives from the various main activity areas on the field or on the mobile facility shall participate in the coordinating or the joint, local working environment committee, respectively. For mobile facilities, a representative of the operator shall participate, except during transit.
When a mobile facility is part of the petroleum activities on a field, the operator shall ensure coordination between the joint, local working environment committee and the coordinating working environment committee.
The employer shall ensure that the enterprise has or is affiliated with an approved occupational health service with competence adapted to the enterprise's risk factors.
The operator or the party responsible for operating a facility, shall ensure cooperation between its occupational health service and similar personnel working for the other employers.
The employer shall ensure the employees are offered regular health examinations to reveal long-term effects of working environment factors.
Employees who have undergone biological examinations shall have access to the results that concern to what extent he/she has been exposed to hazardous conditions.
The employer shall also ensure the employees are offered a health examination before they are assigned work that can entail particular health risks, so that preventive measures can be implemented.
Employees who have been subjected to hazardous exposure in their work, shall be offered special health examinations if they are still employed, so that any corrective measures can be implemented.
The employer shall create a system to register and follow up working hours for all employees in the individual enterprises. The same applies to personnel in management or particularly independent positions as mentioned in Section 10-12, first and second subsection of the Working Environment Act, when this position is important as regards safety.
When work is carried out on several work sites for the same employer, this employer shall register the total working hours.
The operator or the party responsible for operating a facility shall ensure that anyone staying on the facility has access to professionally competent health services, cf. Section 16 of the Framework Regulations.
A physician shall have the professional responsibility for the health service.
The necessary number of nurses shall at all times be present on the facility to ensure prudent safeguarding of the health service's tasks.
The enterprise shall employ or have on-call other health personnel to the extent necessary.
The health service shall take a separate and independent position in health-related matters.
The health service shall
a) promote health and contribute to preventing illness and injury by
i) gathering and communicating information on conditions in the enterprise that can affect the general health,
ii) ensuring prudent hygienic conditions,
iii) implementing preventive measures within its area of responsibility,
b) carry out diagnostics and treatment in connection with illness and injury, including organising first aid in the event of accidents,
c) contribute to establishing the health emergency preparedness as part of the enterprise's total emergency preparedness, including transport of sick and injured personnel.
The health service shall have a physician on-call at all times, who can be summoned to the facility on the shortest possible notice.
The Regulations relating to medicines handling for enterprises and health personnel that provide medical treatment (in Norwegian only) apply to the handling of medicines, with the exception of Section 10.
Medicines and medical equipment shall be adapted to the need during operation of the facility and in the event of emergency situations. Medicines and medical equipment shall be regularly checked and stocks replenished.
The physician responsible for the health service on the facility shall have corresponding responsibility concerning communicable diseases as a district medical officer according to the Contagious Illness Protection Act (in Norwegian only) with associated regulations.
The food on the facility shall at all times be of such quantity and quality to ensure that the hygienic and nutritional needs of the personnel are satisfied.
The provisions in the Drinking Water Regulations (in Norwegian only) apply to the water supply and drinking water in the petroleum activities.
Cleaning shall be planned and conducted such that the indoor environment is hygienic and aesthetically satisfactory at all times.
Before facilities are placed, the necessary preliminary surveys ensuring prudent installation, use and disposal of the facilities shall be carried out.
During installation of facilities and parts of these, it shall be ensured that the loads they are exposed to, do not exceed the loads mentioned in Section 11 of the Facilities Regulations.
Upon completion of facilities, it shall be ensured that they fulfil the requirements in the Facilities Regulations, cf. also Section 23 of the Framework RegulationsSection 5 of the Management Regulations. The technical condition of facilities, systems and equipment shall be maintained until the facilities, systems and equipment are put into service.
The operator shall ensure that people and supplies can be transported safely to, from and between facilities and vessels during placement, installation and use, and for the chosen disposal alternative.
Transport shall be coordinated with emergency preparedness, as mentioned in Section 73.
Only those who work on a facility, have access to it. Others shall have permission from the operator or a party authorised by the operator.
The operator shall ensure that a comprehensive overview is available at all times of everyone staying on or on their way to or from a facility or vessel participating in the petroleum activities.
Everyone staying on such facilities or vessels, shall be provided with sufficient information on applicable rules for the stay, and compliance shall be ensured.
Based on safety considerations, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway can, through administrative decision, determine the total number of people allowed to stay on a facility. In special cases, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway can prohibit visits.
Cabin sharing is not permitted unless the conditions of second subsection are satisfied. Cabin sharing means that two persons have the use of the same single cabin for 24 hours, but in such a way that both of them sleep alone.
Following discussions with the employee representatives, cabin sharing can be used in the following cases:
a) restoring of physical barriers and in other acute situations
b) turnaround/revision stop
c) hook-up and start-up
In the event of cabin sharing as given in second subsection litera b and c, the total individual strain shall be taken into account and, if necessary, use of cabin sharing shall be spread so that it comprises all employees accommodated on the facility at the time in question. Use of cabin sharing shall be compensated for.
In the event of a decision regarding the duration and scope of such accommodation, cf. also Section 11 of the Management Regulations, the consequences shall be clarified and compensating measures shall be implemented to ensure safety and necessary rest and restitution. Which compensating measures to implement, shall be discussed with the employee representatives.
Before facilities and parts of these are started up for the first time or after technical modifications, the commissioning as mentioned in Section 16, shall be carried out.
During start-up as mentioned in the first subsection, and during operation,
a) the management system with associated processes, resources and operations organisation shall be established,
b) governing documents, including technical operations documents, shall be available in an updated version and the operations personnel shall be familiar with them,
c) systems for employee participation shall be established, cf. Section 13 of the Framework Regulations,
d) the health service shall be in accordance with Section 8 and
e) the occupational health service shall be in accordance with Section 5.
The responsible party shall ensure that the personnel at all times have the competence necessary to carry out the activities in accordance with the health, safety and environment legislation. In addition, the personnel shall be able to handle hazard and accident situations, cf. Section 14 of the Management Regulations and Section 23 of these regulations.
Personnel who will carry out bell diving or surface-oriented diving, shall have a valid certificate. The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway appoints suitable enterprises to issue certificates on its behalf. Payment can be charged for issuance of certificates.
Managers and others with responsibility for decisions that affect the working environment, shall be provided the same training as members of working environment committees and safety delegates.
The individual employee and manager shall be provided with training in working environment factors of significance for conducting their work.
Managers with direct responsibility for work with radioactive sources shall have completed theoretical and practical radiation protection training.
The employees shall be provided necessary training in health and safety matters, and the training shall take place during working hours. Criteria shall be set for what constitutes necessary training.
Training as mentioned in the fourth subsection, shall be provided upon employment, transfer or change of work tasks, introduction of new work equipment or changes to the equipment and upon introduction of new technology that applies to the individual's workplace or work tasks.
The training shall be adapted to the changed or new risk in the enterprise, and repeated when necessary.
The responsible party shall ensure that necessary training and necessary drills are conducted, so that the personnel are always able to handle operational disturbances and hazard and accident situations in an effective manner.
Through drills, the operator shall verify that all the performance requirements to emergency preparedness against acute pollution are fulfilled, and that the emergency preparedness resources that are intended to be used, are operative and available. The verification shall be completed prior to starting the planned activity. The documentation shall be made available to the authorities upon request.
The responsible party shall set criteria for when procedures shall be used to prevent faults and hazard and accident situations.
It shall be ensured that procedures are established and used in such a way as to fulfil their intended functions.
Use of facilities and parts of these shall be in accordance with requirements stipulated in and in pursuance of the health, safety and environment legislation and any additional limitations that follow from fabrication, installation and commissioning. The use shall at all times be in accordance with the facility's technical condition and the assumptions for use that form the basis for prudent activities.
When setting restrictions for the activity level on the facility, the maintenance status shall also be considered.
The measures and restrictions that are necessary for maintaining the safety systems’ barrier functions in the event of overbridging, disconnection or other impairment, shall be set in advance. The compensatory measures shall be implemented as rapidly as possible when such impairment occurs.
The status of all safety systems shall be known by and available for relevant personnel at all times.
It shall be ensured that critical activities are carried out within the operational restrictions set during the engineering phase and in the risk analyses as mentioned in Section 16 of the Management Regulations, cf. also Section 30 of these regulations.
The responsible party shall define which activities that, in combination with other activities, shall be considered simultaneous activities.
When conducting simultaneous activities that contribute to an unacceptable increase in risk, the necessary measures shall be implemented, cf. Section 9 of the Management Regulations.
When scheduling activities on the individual facility, the responsible party shall ensure that important risk contributors are kept under control, both individually and overall, cf. also Section 12 of the Management Regulations.
The planning shall consider the status of important risk contributors and changes in risk evident from the risk indicators, cf. Section 10 of the Management Regulations.
It shall be ensured that potentially dangerous explosives shall be able to be simply handled and removed in the event of a hazard and accident situation.
Explosives shall be secured such that they do not go off unintentionally during storage, handling and use.
Planned activities shall be cleared as regards safety before they are carried out. Which conditions shall be met, shall be evident from the clearance, including which measures shall be implemented before, during and after the work so that those participating in or who may be affected by the activity, are not injured, and so that the likelihood of mistakes that can lead to hazard and accident situations is reduced.
The responsible party shall ensure that matters of significance for prudent execution of the activities as regards health and safety, are monitored and kept under control at all times, cf. Section 19 of the Management Regulations.
Activities in connection with the flight weather service shall be carried out according to Section 31 of the Civil Aviation Authority's Regulations relating to flight over the continental shelf – commercial aviation to and from the helicopter deck on permanent and mobile offshore facilities (in Norwegian only), and in the Civil Aviation Authority's Regulations relating to flight weather service (in Norwegian only).
Personnel with control and monitoring functions shall at all times be able to efficiently collect and process information on such conditions, cf. also Section 14 of the Management Regulations.
In connection with shift and crew changes, the responsible party shall ensure necessary transfer of information on the status of safety systems and ongoing work, as well as other information of significance for health, safety and the environment during the execution of activities, cf. Section 15 of the Management Regulations.
The employer shall ensure that the work is organised so as to avoid hazardous exposure and unfortunate physical and psychological strains for the individual employee, and to reduce the likelihood of mistakes that can lead to hazard and accident situations.
The organisation shall be based on an individual and overall evaluation of acute and long-term effects from the various working environment factors, and on an evaluation of how technology and organisation affect the opportunity to work safely.
The work shall be organised with sufficient consideration for the employee's opportunities, limitations and need for a meaningful work situation, cf. Section 35.
The work shall be planned such that as much work as possible is carried out during the daytime, and such that the employees are ensured the necessary rest and restitution.
The employer shall reduce unfortunate work loads and risks of injury and accidents based on conducted analyses, mapping and gathered information on the employees' own experience of work-related risk and work load conditions.
The employer shall ensure that the work is organised such that the employees are not exposed to unfortunate work loads as a result of manual handling, working position, repetitive movements, work intensity, etc., cf. also Section 20 of the Facilities Regulations.
The employers shall ensure a good psychosocial working environment by considering conditions that can influence the employees' health, safety and welfare. Special emphasis shall be accorded the interaction between requirements for work performance, the employees' perception of control over their own work and social support in the working environment.
The employer shall ensure that hazardous chemical exposure during storage, use, handling and disposal of chemicals, and during operations and processes that produce chemical components, is avoided, cf. Section 15 of the Facilities Regulations.
The action values and threshold values in Regulations relating to action values and threshold values (in Norwegian only) shall be corrected by means of a safety factor of 0.6 for a working period of twelve hours, and for persons found to be working under heightened pressure, a safety factor of 0.2 shall apply, except for CO and CO2.
The employer shall ensure that hazardous exposure during storage, use, handling and disposal of radioactive sources is avoided, cf. Section 26 of the Facilities Regulations.
The employer shall ensure that no employees are exposed to hazardous noise as mentioned in Section 23, first subsection of the Facilities Regulations.
The exposure action value is LEX12h = 80 dB(A) and LpCpeak = 130 dBC. If the action value is exceeded, risk-reducing measures shall be considered.
Qualified risk assessments shall be carried out, cf. Section 18 of the Management Regulations. These shall cover all aspects of significance for clarifying health and safety hazards as regards exposure to noise.
The work shall be planned and conducted in such a manner that the employees are protected against noise and such that the noise load is reduced to the extent possible. Measures shall be implemented to the extent possible as regards the technical development, or in some other manner limiting the noise exposure in duration and intensity. This also entails that work shall be organised with sufficient noise-free periods.
The employer shall ensure that employees and safety delegates receive continuous information and training on relevant risks in connection with noise if the employees are exposed to noise equal to or exceeding LEX12h = 80 dB or LpC,peak = 130 dB.
The employer shall ensure that no employees are exposed to hazardous vibrations, cf. Section 24 of the Facilities Regulations.
The responsible party shall set criteria for which climatic conditions require protective measures during outdoor work, and under which conditions such work shall be limited or halted, cf. also Section 22 of the Facilities Regulations.
It shall be ensured that the employees are provided with information on health risk and the risk of accidents during the work to be performed.
The results of assessments, analyses, measurements, mappings of causes of work-related illnesses, investigations of work accidents and near-accidents, and the importance of these results for work execution, shall be available.
The employees and their representatives shall familiarise themselves with this information.
The responsible party shall ensure that facilities or parts thereof are maintained, so that they are capable of carrying out their required functions in all phases of their lifetime.
Facilities' systems and equipment shall be classified as regards the health, safety and environment consequences of potential functional failures.
For functional faults that can lead to serious consequences, the responsible party shall identify the various failure modes with associated failure causes and failure mechanisms, and predict the likelihood of failure for the individual failure mode.
The classification shall be used as a basis in choosing maintenance activities and maintenance frequencies, in prioritising between different maintenance activities and in evaluating the need for spare parts.
Failure modes that may constitute a health, safety or environment risk, cf. Section, shall be systematically prevented through a maintenance programme.
This programme shall include activities for monitoring performance and technical condition, which ensure identification and correction of failure modes that are under development or have occurred.
The programme shall also contain activities for monitoring and control of failure mechanisms that can lead to such failure modes.
An overall plan shall be prepared for conducting the maintenance programme and corrective maintenance activities, cf. Section 12 of the Management Regulations.
Criteria shall be available for setting priorities with associated deadlines for carrying out the individual maintenance activities. The criteria shall consider the classification as mentioned in Section 46.
The maintenance effectiveness shall be systematically evaluated based on registered performance and technical condition data for facilities or parts thereof.
The evaluation shall be used for continuous improvement of the maintenance programme, cf. Section 23 of the Management Regulations.
Technical monitoring of new structures and maritime systems shall be carried out during their first year of service.
For new types of load-bearing structures, data shall be collected during two winter seasons to compare them with the design calculations, see Section 17 of the Facilities Regulations.
When using facilities beyond their original design life, instrumentation of relevant structure sections shall be considered so as to measure any ageing effects.
When facilities are disposed of, the operator shall carry out studies of the structure's condition. The results shall be used to assess the safety of similar facilities.
On pipeline systems where failure modes may constitute an environmental or safety hazard, cf. Section 46, inspections shall be carried out to monitor potential failure modes that may affect the integrity of the pipeline system.
Blowout preventers with control functions and other pressure control equipment shall undergo a complete overhaul and recertification every five years.
The operator shall monitor the external environment, cf. the Framework Regulations Section 48.
The monitoring shall be adapted to the existing pollution risk, be able to prove and map pollution of the external environment, and indicate development trends in the environmental condition.
The environmental monitoring of pollution from regular emissions and discharges shall include both benthic habitats (the sediments, soft and hard sea bed fauna) and the water column, and shall be performed and reported in accordance with the Guidelines for environmental monitoring of the petroleum activities offshore (M-300) (in Norwegian only)
The operators shall cooperate on monitoring.
Personnel with monitoring functions shall at all times be able to efficiently gather and process information from monitoring.
The operators shall, as part of the external monitoring, contribute to developing new methods for monitoring sediments, benthic fauna and water column.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can in, special cases, set additional requirements for monitoring beyond the prevailing guidelines.
To map the environmental status, the operator shall carry out baseline surveys
a) before exploration drilling in new and previously unsurveyed exploration areas,
b) before exploration drilling in areas where there are proven vulnerable environmental values (species and habitats), or where their existence is likely,
c) before production drilling.
Baseline surveys of the sediments and relevant fauna elements on the seabed shall be performed and reported in accordance with the Guidelines for environmental monitoring of the petroleum activities offshore (M-300) (in Norwegian only). A baseline survey is valid for six years unless the Norwegian Environment Agency decides otherwise as far as duration is concerned.
Plans for environmental monitoring of benthic habitats (sediments, soft and hard sea bed fauna) shall be prepared in accordance with the Guidelines for environmental monitoring of the petroleum activities offshore (M-300) (in Norwegian only).
Studies in the individual region shall, as a rule, be carried out every three years. The surveys alternate between regions. The scope of monitoring shall be related to the shelf activity in the individual regions. Monitoring of new activity is in addition to, and shall be adapted to, existing monitoring.
The samples from the regional and field-specific stations shall be collected on the same trip. The regional stations shall describe the general background levels in the area for the examined components, and function as references to an expected normal condition. The field-specific stations shall provide information on the condition surrounding the individual facilities in the regions.
Studies shall provide information on both the vertical and horizontal spread of relevant parameters.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can, in special cases, order other types of environmental surveys, and studies in other parts of the influence area, than those described in the Guidelines for environmental monitoring of the petroleum activities offshore (M-300) (in Norwegian only).
Plans for environmental monitoring of the water column shall be prepared in accordance with the Guidelines for environmental monitoring of the petroleum activities offshore (M-300) (in Norwegian only), and shall be submitted to the Norwegian Environment Agency by 1 April of the year the monitoring will be carried out.
The water column monitoring shall consist of monitoring in the field. The scope of the monitoring shall, as a minimum, include fish and mussel, and shall be carried out every three years. The monitoring shall document whether marine organisms from Norwegian waters are affected by pollution from the petroleum activities.
The period between two field-monitoring activities shall be used for further development and qualification of methods for future water column monitoring.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can, in special cases, order other types of environmental surveys, and studies in other parts of the influence area, than those described in the Guidelines for environmental monitoring of the petroleum activities offshore (M-300) (in Norwegian only).
If the external environment monitoring shows significant deviations from the expected condition or development, the operator shall take measures to find the reason for the deviations.
Operators shall establish remote sensing systems to detect and map the position, area, quantity, and properties of acute pollution.
The remote sensing system shall as independent of visibility, light and weather conditions as possible, provide sufficient information to ensure that acute pollution from the activity is detected and mapped as quickly as possible. Leak detection based on process monitoring, monitoring of the water column and benthic habitats, among other things, shall be assessed as part of the remote sensing system. There shall be a plan for detecting and mapping based on environmental risk. The remote sensing system shall give sufficient information on amounts of discharge and dispersal, so that decisions on necessary risk reduction measures can be made, cf. Section 48 of the Framework Regulations.
With the aim of detecting acute pollution, the area around the facility shall be regularly monitored. The need for continuous monitoring shall be evaluated.
The operators shall cooperate in establishing a system that ensures detection and mapping of acute pollution that has driven away from the facility, cf. Section 42 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only), cf. Section 21 of the Framework Regulations, cf. Section 78 of these regulations.
Acute pollution that is discovered shall be mapped, with respect to coverage, drifting direction, and amount of discharge. The thickness distribution of any oil slick on the sea surface shall be mapped. The mapping shall be initiated as soon as the acute pollution is discovered. Visual observation on the sea surface shall be performed in compliance with Bonn agreement oil appearance code BAOAC).
Operators shall contribute with further developing the remote sensing systems.
The Environment Agency can set more explicit requirements regarding detection and mapping of acute pollution.
Environmental surveys shall be carried out in the event of acute pollution to identify and describe damage to vulnerable environmental values in the open sea, along the coast and at the shoreline. The surveys shall be initiated as soon as possible and no later than 48 hours after the pollution was detected. They shall build on results from the mapping of vulnerable environmental values that has been carried out in accordance with Section 53 and the data basis from the environmental risk analyses, cf. Section 17 of the Management Regulations. The effect of mechanical clean-up and/or use of dispersants and shoreline cleaning agents shall be investigated, both with regard to the efficacy of the combatting method and the effect on environmental values.
If oil or condensate is proven in connection with exploration activity, the oil or condensate shall be characterised as soon as possible. The results of the characterisation shall in case of future activities be included in the basis for assessment of environmental risk associated with acute pollution and in the decision basis for risk reduction, including dimensioning and development of emergency preparedness.
The characterisation shall cover physical and chemical properties, including weathering and fate in a marine environment under relevant external conditions.
Oil and condensate that can occur as acute pollution, shall be measured regularly as regards physical and chemical parameters. If such measurements show significant changes, a new characterisation shall be performed.
Produced water shall be cleaned prior to discharge to sea.
The oil content in produced water discharged to sea, shall be as low as possible, cf. Chapter II of the Framework Regulations and Sections 7 and 8 of the Management Regulations. In any event, the oil content shall not exceed 30 mg oil per litre of water as a weighted average for one calendar month.
On facilities that discharge produced water, the operator shall perform environmental risk assessments of the discharges. These shall be performed as soon as possible after produced water is available. New risk assessments shall be performed in case of significant changes in the discharge or in any event minimum every five years. The Norwegian Environment Agency can set more explicit requirements to implementation and frequency of environmental risk assessments and discharge of produced water. Documentation associated with performed risk assessments shall be made available to the Norwegian Environment Agency upon request.
Water treatment systems shall be designed and operated such that the environmental strain from discharges to sea will be as low as possible also if the discharge limitations, cf. the second subsection, can be met with reduced treatment effect. The operator shall establish and maintain a best practice for operating and maintaining the processing system, comprising treatment units incorporated in the system on the individual facility.
The operator shall regularly assess possible technical solutions that can reduce the environmental strain from discharges of oily water. Documentation associated with such assessments shall be made available to the Norwegian Environment Agency upon request.
The operator shall take appropriate measures to limit potential damage to the external environment from oil pollution in cases where discharge of produced water involves visible oil on the sea surface. The obligation under this subsection applies to measures that are in reasonable proportion to the damage and inconvenience to be avoided.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can set additional requirements regarding discharges of produced water.
The operator shall obtain permission according to Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) for injection of produced water.
Oily drainage water and other oily water may be discharged to sea subsequent to treatment.
The oil content in water as mentioned in the first subsection and discharged to sea, shall be as low as possible, cf. Chapter II of the Framework Regulations and Sections 7 and 8 of the Management Regulations. In any event, the oil content shall not exceed 30 mg oil per litre of water as a weighted average for one calendar month.
Treatment systems shall be operated such that the environmental strain from discharges to sea will be as low as possible
Chemicals that accompany water as mentioned in the first subsection to sea after cleaning, must be covered by a discharge permit, cf. Section, first subsection. Adding chemical residue or other waste to oily water that is discharged to sea pursuant to this section, is not allowed.
The operator shall carry out comprehensive assessments to ensure that the best environmental solution for handling drainage water and other oily water is selected.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can set additional requirements regarding discharges of drainage water and other oily water.
The operator shall obtain permission according to Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) for injection of drainage water and other oily water.
Oily displacement water may be discharged to sea if the oil content does not exceed 30 mg oil per litre of water.
The operator shall have permission for emissions according to Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only).
The operator shall see to that chemicals that will be used in or discharged from the petroleum activities on the continental shelf, are tested as regards inherent ecotoxicological properties. Ecotoxicological testing of chemicals shall be performed at laboratories that are approved in accordance with OECD's principles for good laboratory practice.
Chemicals shall be tested for the individual organic substances' biodegradability in accordance with OECD’s guidelines for testing of chemicals, test number 306. If this test cannot be used because the substance is insoluble in water, the marine BODIS test shall be carried out in accordance with ISO 10708:1997, with modifications as described in “Biodegradability of chemical substances in seawater – Results of the four OSPARCOM ring tests.” On application, the Norwegian Environment Agency may accept the use of alternative test methods for substances that are known to be toxic to microorganisms, if the methods are standardised.
Chemicals shall be tested for the individual organic substances' potential for bioaccumulation, in accordance with OECD’s guidelines for testing of chemicals, test number 117 or test number 107. This applies to substances with molecular weight lower than 700 g/mol only. For substances that cannot be tested according to standardised methods, the bioaccumulation potential shall be calculated based on modelling or professional evaluations, which shall be documented and described in HOCNF, cf. fifth subsection.
Chemicals shall be tested for the individual organic or inorganic substances’ acute toxicity with the following tests:
a) growth inhibition on Skeletonema costatum or Phaeodactylum tricornutum in compliance with ISO 10253:2006,
b) acute lethal toxicity on Acartia tonsa or Tisbe battaglia in compliance with ISO 14669:1999,
c) acute toxicity on juvenile of Scophtalmus maximus or juvenile of Cyprinodon variegatus in compliance with Part B in OSPAR’s protocol for testing of chemicals used in the offshore petroleum industry. This does not apply if the substance is inorganic and has a EC50 or LC50 less than or equal to 10 mg/l on the other test organisms,
d) toxicity test on Corophium sp. in compliance with OSPAR’s protocol for testing of chemicals used in the offshore petroleum industry, if the substance is a sinker, has a Koc > 1000, has a log (Pow) >4, on in any other way are known to adsorb to particles or end up in the sediments, or contain surfactants.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can approve other relevant toxicity tests if they are performed according to standardized methods.
OSPAR Harmonised Offshore Chemical Notification Format (HOCNF) shall be available for all chemicals used or discharged. Results from the ecotoxicological tests shall be included in HOCNF part 2.
The requirements on ecotoxicological testing and documentation does not apply for:
a) lubricants which are not discharged to sea, including those delivered in spray cans,
b) chemicals in closed systems which are not discharged to sea, and with usage of less than 3000 kg per year,
c) laboratory chemicals,
d) dispersants and shoreline cleaning agents that are used to combat acute pollution,
e) new chemicals to be field tested, cf. Section 66,
g) paint and other surface coatings, including those delivered in spray cans,
h) gas tracers,
The requirements for testing and ecotoxicological documentation in HOCNF part 2, does not apply for chemicals in green category, cf. Section 63, the additive packages in chemicals in closed systems that is not discharged to sea with a usage above 3000 kg, impurities, , polymers, potassium hydroxide, sodium hydroxide, hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, nitric acid and phosphoric acid. For polymers, the Norwegian Environment Agency can still demand data, if they consider this necessary to evaluate the substance’s properties.
The operator shall categorise substances and chemicals that are subject to requirements to documentation in accordance with Section 62, sixth subsection. The requirement does not apply to impurities in chemicals.
The black category comprises the following:
a) substances on the Priority List,
b) substances on OSPAR’s Priority List,
c) substances on REACH’s Candidate List ,
d) substances that both have BOD28 less than 20 percent and bioaccumulation potential Log Pow higher than or equal to 4,5, cf. Section 62,
e) substances that both have BOD28 less than 20 percent, toxicity LC50 or EC50 less than or equal to 10 mg/l, cf. Section 62,
f) substances which are mutagenic, Muta 1A and 1B, or reprotoxic, Rep kat 1A and 1B.
g) Additive packages that is exempted the requirement in Section 62 seventh subsection, and is not tested.
The red category comprises substances not included in the black category, but fulfilling one or several of the following criteria:
a) inorganic substances with acute toxicity, EC50 or LC50 less than or equal to 1 mg/l, cf. Section 62,
b) organic substances with BOD28 less than 20 percent, cf. Section 62,
c) organic substances or substance mixtures that meet two out of three of the following criteria, cf. Section 62:
- BOD28 less than 60 percent
- Log Pow greater than or equal to 3, and molecular weight less than 700
- Acute toxicity, LC50 or EC50, less than or equal to 10 mg/l,
d) polymers which have not undergone ecotoxicological tests, cf. Section 62.
The yellow category comprises substances that are not included in the black, red or green category. Substances in yellow category with BOD28 greater than or equal to 20 percent and less than 60 percent, cf. Section 62, shall be assessed and categorised in the following subcategories:
a) subcategory 1 if the degradation products are expected to biodegrade completely,
b) subcategory 2, if the degradation products are expected to biodegrade to substance(s) which are not hazardous,
c) subcategory 3, if the degradation products are expected to biodegrade to substance(s) that may be hazardous.
The assessment shall be documented.
The green category comprises:
a) substances on OSPAR’s PLONOR-list,
b) substances on the list in REACH Annex IV,
c) some/individual substances included in REACH Annex V, upon approval from the Norwegian Environment Agency.
Chemicals shall be categorised according to their substance content in the following way:
a) Black category if the chemical contains substances in the black category, cf. second subsection,
b) Red category if the chemical contains substances in the red category, cf. third subsection, but not in the black category,
c) Yellow category if the chemical contains substances in the yellow category, cf. fourth subsection, but not the black or red category. If relevant, they shall further be categorized in subcategories, cf. fourth subsection litera a to c:
1. Subcategory 1, if the chemical only contains substances in subcategory 1,
2. Subcategory 2, if the chemical contains substances in subcategory 2, but not subcategory 3,
3. Subcategory 3, if the chemical contains substances in subcategory 3,
d) Green category of the chemical only contains substances in green category, cf. fifth subsection.
The operator shall carry out comprehensive evaluations of the chemicals' potential for environmental harm, based on the chemicals' innate properties, quantities, time and location of discharge, as well as other factors of significance. The assessments shall be carried out
a) before new chemicals are used
b) when entering into chemicals contracts
c) as a minimum every three years for chemicals in the green and yellow categories
d) as a minimum annually for chemicals in the red and black categories
The environmental assessments shall be documented.
Based on the environmental assessments required by Section 64, the operator shall select those chemicals that give the lowest risk of environmental harm. Chemicals in the black and red categories and in the yellow sub category 3, cf. Section 63, shall only be selected if they are necessary for technical or safety reasons, or it has been documented in special cases that application of these will result in the lowest risk for environmental harm.
The operator shall use chemicals with the lowest possible content of impurities.
The operator shall have separate plans for substitution of chemicals in the black and red category, and in the yellow sub category 3, cf. Section 63. The plans shall outline the chemicals that are prioritized for substitution and when this can be done.
The operator shall obtain a permit in accordance with Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) to use and discharge chemicals and to inject chemicals and water containing chemicals.
Unused chemicals shall not be discharged to sea, cf. the Pollution Control Regulations, Chapter 22 (in Norwegian only) regarding dredging and dumping in the sea and river systems.
Chemicals shall be stored in a prudent manner.
Use and discharge of chemicals shall be reduced to the extent possible.
The following is allowed if it is in accordance with requirements pursuant to the Act relating to control of products and consumer services (in Norwegian only):
a) necessary use and discharge of chemicals in fire water systems,
b) use of lubricants that will not be discharged to sea, including those supplied in spray cans,
c) use of chemicals in closed systems, that will not be discharged to sea, and with a consumption less than 3000 kg per facility per year,
d) use of laboratory chemicals,
e) use of fuel,
f) use of paint and other surface treatment agents, including those supplied in spray cans,
g) use of gas trace substances,
h) use and discharge of emergency preparedness chemicals.
Discharge of chemicals used to prevent lost circulation and that consist of plastics or contain plastics, is not allowed.
Field testing of chemicals assumed to be in the read, yellow or green category that are alternatives to chemicals included in the permit pursuant to the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only), or testing of chemicals within new areas of use that are not included in the permit, is allowed. Such field testing shall last no longer than 14 days. Total consumption of substances presumed to be in the red category, shall not exceed 50 kg. Field testing of chemicals presumed to be in the black category, and trace substances, is not allowed.
When evaluating the date and time to discharge large quantities of water containing chemicals from pipelines, relevant expertise shall be consulted.
If the operator plans to keep chemicals in preparedness for safety reasons, an overview of these shall be prepared. The operator shall have guidelines for when and in what quantities and concentrations the emergency preparedness chemicals will be used. The guidelines shall be based on risk analyses, cf. Chapter V of the Management Regulations.
Cuttings from drilling activities with appendages of water-based drilling fluids can be discharged to the sea, unless otherwise required by permit under Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only).
Cuttings from drilling and well activities, sand and other solid particles shall not be discharged to sea if the content of formation oil, other oil or base fluid in organic drilling fluid exceeds ten grams per kilo of dry mass. The operator must have a permit under Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) for the discharge of material cuttings, sand and solid particles containing formation oil, other oil or base fluid in organic drilling fluid under ten grams per kilogram of dry mass and the injection of such material..
The operator shall obtain a permit pursuant to Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) to inject materials such as cuttings, sand and solid particles.
Oil or oily water from well testing or well clean-up shall not be discharged to sea, unless the discharge is cleaned, cf. Section 60a. This does not apply during testing or clean-up of exploration wells from facilities without treatment plants. For such facilities, comprehensive assessments shall be carried out to ensure that the best environmental solution is selected.
Formation testing shall be carried out with the least possible strain on the external environment. Flaring of hydrocarbons shall be avoided to the extent practically possible.
The operator shall obtain a permit pursuant to Chapter 3 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) to inject the well stream.
The operator shall take appropriate measures to limit potential damage to the external environment from oil pollution when burning of hydrocarbons involves visible oil on the sea surface. The obligation under this subsection applies to measures that are in reasonable proportion to the damage and inconvenience to be avoided.
The content of oil and other substances in produced water that is discharged, shall be measured. Other substances means substances for which reporting requirements are set, cf. the Norwegian Environment Agency's Guidelines for reporting from the petroleum activities offshore (in Norwegian only). The test results shall be used to verify the treatment plant's performance.
The measurement frequency, discharge parameters and measurement methods shall be described in a measurement programme.
The measurement programme shall be established such that the scope of measurements is sufficient for the purpose, to ensure representative and comparable measurements.
Analyses shall be carried out in a systematic and standardised manner. The oil content of water shall be analysed according to OSPAR's reference method for determining dispersed oil in water (OSPAR Agreement 2005-15) or analysis methods calibrated towards this.
For discharged drainage water and other oily water and for injected produced water, drainage water and other oily water, the amount of water and content of oil and other substances shall be measured, calculated or estimated.
The responsible party shall measure the amounts of organic drilling fluid and oil discharged with solids.
The operator shall, to the extent possible, avoid that waste is generated.
The waste generated in connection with the activities, shall be handled in a prudent environmental and hygienic manner and in accordance with the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) and decisions made in pursuance of the Pollution Control Act.
The leaving behind in marine environment of waste, equipment and other material which can result in damage or negative consequences to the environment, and which are not covered by the disposal plan adopted in pursuance of Chapter 5 of the Petroleum Act, is not allowed without a permit from the Norwegian Environment Agency.
The operator shall prepare a waste treatment plan.
Waste oil can be added to the production flow. The operator shall obtain a permit pursuant to Chapter 5 of the Pollution Control Act (in Norwegian only) to inject waste oil.
The operator or the party responsible for operating a facility shall prepare a strategy for emergency preparedness against hazard and accident situations, cf. also Section 9 litera c. The emergency preparedness shall be established, inter alia, on the basis of results from risk and emergency preparedness analyses as mentioned in Section 17 of the Management Regulations and the defined hazard and accident situations and barrier performance requirements, cf. Section 5 of the Management Regulations. For the establishment of emergency preparedness with dispersants and beach-cleaning agents, refer to Chapter 19 of the Pollution Control Regulations (in Norwegian only).
The emergency preparedness against acute pollution shall cover the ocean, coast and shoreline. The operator shall have three independent barriers, cf. Section 5 of the Management Regulations, one near the source, one in fjord and coastal waters and one at shoreline. The barrier near the source and in the open sea shall be able to handle the quantity of pollution that can fall to the barrier. Barriers in fjord and coastal waters and at shoreline shall be able to handle the quantity of pollution that can fall to the barrier after the effect of the previous barrier has been taken into account.
The Norwegian Environment Agency can set more detailed requirements for the extent of this emergency preparedness.
When cooperating on shared use of different operators' emergency preparedness resources, the cooperation shall be regulated by agreement.
When using vessels and mobile facilities registered in a national ship register, the operator shall coordinate its own and the contractor's emergency preparedness plans, cf. Section 20, first subsection of the Framework Regulations.
The operator shall ensure that the emergency preparedness is coordinated with the public rescue service, the rest of the national health and care service and municipal emergency preparedness in accordance with the Public Health Act Section 28 (in Norwegian only), so that the chain of action for rescued, ill or injured personnel is coherent and professionally sound, cf. Section 20, second subsection of the Framework Regulations.
The emergency preparedness organisation shall be robust, so that it is able to handle hazard and accident situations in an efficient manner.
In the event of acute pollution, the emergency preparedness organisation shall establish necessary functions so as to effectively carry out actions against acute pollution.
Emergency preparedness plans shall be established that at all times describe the emergency preparedness and contain action plans for the defined hazard and accident situations.
Plans for emergency preparedness against acute pollution shall document the emergency preparedness resources that are included, response times, and performance and capacity in relation to the prerequisites of the environmental risk and emergency preparedness analyses. Relevant combatting methods shall be described in the emergency preparedness plan.
The responsible party shall ensure that necessary measures are taken as soon as possible during hazard and accident situations so that
a) the right notification is given immediately, cf. also Section 18 of the Facilities Regulations,
b) hazardous situations do not develop into accident situations. In the event of accident situations, response measures shall be implemented. Response measures to limit acute pollution shall be implemented as close to the emission source as possible,
c) personnel can be rescued during accident situations, cf. also Section 41 of the Facilities Regulations,
d) the personnel on the facility can be evacuated quickly and efficiently at all times, cf. also Section 44 of the Facilities Regulations,
e) the condition can be normalised when the development of a hazard and accident situation has been stopped, e.g. through monitoring and clean-up of the pollution and restoring the environment, thereby restoring the condition to its state before the hazard and accident situation. Criteria shall be set for normalisation of the external environment.
Collaboration on the established emergency preparedness against acute pollution as mentioned in Section 73 and in Section 21 of the Framework Regulations, shall be regulated by agreement and at all times safeguard and be updated in relation to the total need for emergency preparedness as a result of the environmental risk associated with the petroleum activities offshore.
When deemed necessary in the event of new activities, the operator shall implement measures to ensure that the total activity does not entail unacceptable risk.
In the event of action against acute pollution, an action plan shall be prepared as soon as possible. The first version of the plan shall be available no later than two hours after the action management has been established. The plan shall be regularly updated through all action phases.
In the event of action against acute pollution, various response alternatives shall be evaluated, and the combination of measures that results in the lowest strain on the environment in total, shall be chosen. For the use of dispersants and beach-cleaning agents during action against acute pollution, refer to Chapter 19 of the Pollution Regulations (in Norwegian only).
In the event of mechanical combatting, the storage capacity for collected oil shall be sufficient, allowing the action to be performed in an optimal manner.
The action shall not be terminated before the situation is normalised as mentioned in Section 77 litera e, and this is documented.
It shall be ensured that necessary internal and external notification and communication is safeguarded at all times during installation and operation, and during hazard and accident situations, cf. Sections 18 and 19 of the Facilities Regulations.
A person shall be designated on board to be responsible for the communication systems on manned facilities.
Prior to starting well activities, a programme shall be prepared that describes the individual activities to be carried out and the equipment to be used, cf. also Section 10 of the Facilities Regulations.
The programme shall be updated as mentioned in Section 20, second subsection litera b.
The well location and wellbore shall be known at all times and selected based on well parameters of significance for a safe drilling and well activity. It shall be possible to drill a relief well from two alternative locations. The locations shall be mapped and known in advance, cf. also Section 28.
If the distance to adjacent wells is less than the defined minimum distance, restrictions shall be set, cf. Section 28, second subsection.
The responsible party shall ensure that necessary measures are planned and can be implemented to handle situations with shallow gas or other formation fluids, cf. also Section.
When drilling in shallow formations, the selection of well structure and drilling parameters shall prevent gas or formation fluid from the well posing a threat to personnel and facility.
During all drilling and well activities, drilling and well data shall be monitored and collected to verify the well prognoses, so that necessary measures can be implemented and the well programme adjusted if necessary.
During drilling and well activities, there shall be tested well barriers with sufficient independence, cf. also Section 48 of the Facilities Regulations.
If a barrier fails, activities shall not be carried out in the well other than those intended to restore the barrier.
There shall be pumping and fluid capacity available on the facility or on vessels in the event of heavy well intervention. The need for pumping and fluid capacity in the event of light well intervention shall be included in the activity-specific risk assessment.
When handing over wells, the barrier status shall be tested, verified and documented.
In the event of a well control incident, it shall be possible to regain well control by intervening directly in or on the well or by drilling one (1) relief well. This applies to wells where planning of drilling activities has been decided on after 1 January 2016.
In special cases, drilling activities that require more than one (1) relief well to regain well control in the event of a well control incident, can be planned for. When planning such activities, the solutions for regaining well control shall be verified by a party of organisational independence, no later than three months before planned start-up.
Where capping can be a measure in a well control incident, the operator shall have access to capping equipment for subsea wells.
Plans that describe how to regain the well control, shall be prepared.
Operational restrictions shall be set for controlled well stream.
All wells shall be secured before they are abandoned so that well integrity is safeguarded during the time they are abandoned, cf. Section 48 of the Facilities Regulations. For subsea-completed wells, well integrity shall be monitored if the plan is to abandon the wells for more than twelve months.
Exploration wells commenced after 1.1.2014 shall not be temporarily abandoned beyond two years. In production wells abandoned after 1.1.2014, hydrocarbon-bearing zones shall be plugged and abandoned permanently within three years if the well is not continuously monitored.
It shall be possible to check well integrity in the event of reconnection on temporarily abandoned wells.
Abandonment of radioactive sources in the well shall not be planned. If the radioactive source cannot be removed, it shall be abandoned in a prudent manner.
Limitations shall be set for the personnel's access to the work area for remotely controlled systems.
There shall be visual contact and radio communication between personnel when using remotely operated pipe handling, cf. Section, second subsection.
When carrying out maritime operations, the responsible party shall implement necessary measures so that those who participate in the operations, are not injured, and so that the likelihood of hazard and accident situations is reduced.
Requirements shall be set for maintaining the position of vessels and facilities when conducting such operations, and criteria shall be set for start-up and interruption, cf. Section 63 of the Facilities Regulations.
During live work, work near live installations, work in or near earthed and short-circuited installations and during operation of low and high voltage installations, necessary measures shall be implemented to prevent injury to those who carry out the work, and to reduce the likelihood of hazard and accident situations
The responsible party shall designate a person with responsibility for the electrical facilities.
Everyone participating in lifting operations shall have a radio for communication, cf. Section 18 of the Facilities Regulations, and the radio shall be used unless everyone involved can communicate clearly with each other through direct speech. The responsible party shall ensure that all communication takes place in a clear and concise manner and without disturbances.
The responsible party shall also ensure that the facility's management individually approves lifting operations involving personnel transport if offshore cranes are used for such lifting operations.
When conducting manned underwater operations, operational measures shall be implemented to prevent those participating from being subjected to injury or illness, and to reduce the likelihood of mistakes that can lead to hazard and accident situations. Cf. Chapter VII.
The following time limit provisions shall apply when conducting manned subsea operations:
at working depth:
in the case of diving down to 180 metres, the stay at working depth shall not exceed 14 days. With regard to deeper diving, the stay at working depth shall not exceed ten days,
between saturation periods:
the time between saturation periods shall at least equal the duration of the previous saturation period. With regard to diving deeper than 180 metres, the time between saturation periods shall be at least twice that of the previous saturation period,
in the case of diving down to 180 metres, the bell run shall not exceed eight hours. With regard to deeper diving, the bell run shall not exceed six hours. If the divers stay dry in a subsea chamber, the bell run can be extended to eight hours. The timing of a bell run begins when the clamp between the bell and the chamber is first loosened and ends when the clamp is reconnected, ready for pressure equalisation and final transfer of the divers back to the chamber complex.
in the case of diving down to 180 metres, the divers shall not stay in the water for more than four hours over a twelve-hour period. With regard to a three-man bell run, the time in the water can be extended to six hours provided
1) the diver returns to the diving bell in the course of the third or fourth working hour in water for least a 30-minute break with the diving helmet off. Breaks in the bell shall be logged,
2) the diver has a ”dry day” as a back-up diver in the bell at least every three days. With regard to diving deeper than 180 metres, the diver shall not stay in the water for more than three hours over a twelve-hour period,
of breathing mask:
after a maximum of four hours, divers using a breathing mask in the subsea chamber shall have a break in an atmosphere where use of a breathing mask is not necessary,
following subsea operations:
after a completed saturation period, the divers shall have immediate access to therapeutic recompression for at least 24 hours following completed decompression. In the case of surface-oriented diving, the divers shall have immediate access to therapeutic recompression of at least 12 hours after completed decompression,
period during work under increased pressure:
divers working in water or who work under increased ambient pressure, shall, over a 24-hour period, have a continuous work-free period of at least 12 hours. Work and rest periods shall be specified in a shift programme and shall be planned at regular hours,
h) surface personnel in direct communication with divers in the water: the surface personnel in direct communication with divers in the water shall not perform this function for more than four hours consecutively without a break. The total time in this function shall be limited upward to eight hours over a twelve-hour period.
Chapter IX of the Framework Regulations applies correspondingly to these regulations.
The Regulations will enter into force on 1 January 2011. At this time, the Regulations relating to conduct of activities in the petroleum activities of 3 September 2001 No. 1157 will be repealed.