BP drops Australian Bight environmental plan

December 22, 2016

BP has withdrawn its environment plan that was submitted to Australia’s National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) for the Great Australian Bight, offshore South Australia earlier this week. The recent actions have marked the supermajor’s official exit from the area, and ends the back-and-forth between the company and NOPSEMA.

Image from BP.

The submissions included an exploration drilling program for Stromlo-1 and Whinham-1 exploration wells.

In September, NOPSEMA requested further information from BP on the environmental management of the proposed drilling including: potential oil spill scenarios; management of potential impacts and risks from planned emissions and discharges from the activity, and several more.

“Further information on these key areas was not provided prior to the withdrawal notification being issued by BP, and no further assessment of the environment plan submissions will be undertaken by NOPSEMA,” the authority said.

“NOPSEMA will also initiate the process to withdraw acceptance of the well operations management plans for the Stromlo-1 and Whinham-1 exploration wells, and will manage this process in accordance with regulatory requirements,” NOPSEMA said.

In October, the supermajor dropped its deepwater drilling plans in the Great Australian Bight, noting that the project would not be able to compete for capital investment with other upstream opportunities in its global portfolio in the foreseeable future.

BP’s proposed Great Australian Bight plan originally consisted of drilling four exploration wells. The first two wells were to be drilled with a newbuild semisubmersible mobile offshore drilling unit in 1150-2250m water depth, that was due to start in Q4 2016.

Read more:

BP drops Great Australian Bight plans

NOPSEMA asks for further Bight details

BP’s Great Australian Bight plan needs further assessment

BP submits second Great Australian Bight plan



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