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Norwegian-US collaboration on petroleum-related HSE

On the day President Barack Obama was in Oslo to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, Magne Ognedal, director-general of the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA), visited Washington DC to sign a new cooperation agreement with its US counterpart.


MMS Director Liz Birnbaum and Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority Director General Magne Ognedal sign a MOU on December 10.

MMS Director Liz Birnbaum and Norway’s Petroleum Safety Authority
Director General Magne Ognedal sign a MOU on December 10.

This extends a long-standing collaboration between the PSA and the Minerals Management Service (MMS) aimed at helping to create a safer and more environment-friendly oil and gas industry.

Mr Ognedal signed the five-year memorandum of understanding (MOU) on 10 December with director Liz Birnbaum at the MMS, which regulates petroleum activities on the USA’s outer continental shelf.

Contact
The agreement specifies in part that the MMS and the PSA will maintain regular contact and meet to exchange experience, ideas, challenges and technological solutions.

They will also seek to identify areas in the offshore oil and gas sector where the two regulators have shared interests.

By exchanging information of significance for protecting people, the environment and material assets, the goal is to achieve an even better level of industry safety.

In addition, the MMS and the PSA will assess collaboration in areas where they identify shared challenges.

Established
The collaboration between the two safety regulators was formally established as early as 1993.

“We look forward to continuing the strong cooperation that MMS has with our partners in Norway,” Ms Birnbaum said during the signing ceremony.

“I’m confident that the information exchange will benefit both countries as we each share our valuable experiences in order to continue developing resources in a safe and responsible manner.”

Mr Ognedal expressed himself in complete agreement with his US opposite number, and stressed that almost two decades of cooperation with the MMS had been very useful to the PSA.

“I’m pleased that our collaboration will continue,” he emphasised.