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Better processes on the Norwegian shelf

16/02/2010 The Government is focused on facilitating good development projects on the Norwegian shelf. These are projects which safeguard environmental considerations and provide good regional ripple effects.

In order to guide the companies in their work on development plans, the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy (MPE) has cooperated with the Ministry of Labour, the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway and the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) to update the guidelines for preparation of plans for development and operation and plans for installation and operation (the PDO/PIO guide). A plan for development and operation (PDO) describes the development of a petroleum deposit, while a plan for installation and operation (PIO) is a permit for installation and operation of facilities for transport and exploitation of petroleum.

"I want to see more projects on the Norwegian shelf. The development projects must demonstrate good solutions for the environment and regional ripple effects. The projects must contribute to good resource management while safeguarding HSE considerations. Many new companies have established themselves on the Norwegian shelf in recent years, which increases the need for guidance in terms of the regulations and regulatory practices related to development," says Minister of Petroleum and Energy Terje Riis-Johansen.

The objective of the guidelines is to provide advice on how a PDO or PIO can be prepared so that it meets the authorities' requirements. The guidelines will also explain administrative processes and contribute to efficient interaction between the licensee and the authorities, e.g. through early intervention on the part of the authorities.

The Norwegian shelf is in a mature phase, which means that the discoveries that are developed are smaller than before. This requires more flexible processing by the authorities, in which the documentation submitted in connection with the PDO/PIO process is adapted to the size and complexity of the development. At the same time, major developments could arise which result in significant ripple effects on land. This is also addressed in the guidelines.

The guidelines have been updated to reflect changes in the regulations since the previous edition, and incorporate the existing practice for authority involvement at an early stage. The guidelines are published on the MPE's website www.regjeringen.no/oed and on the NPD's website www.npd.no, and replace the guidelines from June 2000.

Updated: 18/02/2010