A message from the CEO

31 March, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect the everyday lives of all Australians and the way we do business, NOPSEMA is responding to ensure risks to the offshore oil and gas sector continue to be managed and the wellbeing of offshore workers is prioritised.

NOPSEMA has been working with industry and government to deliver regulatory oversight in an agile and responsive way, recognising the many challenges being faced by offshore operators and contractors at this time.

Supporting operators and contractors to maintain critical infrastructure and deliver essential services for national energy supply is vital.

As such, over recent weeks, NOPSEMA has focussed its attention on facilities and activities that are contributing to Australia’s energy needs in the short to medium term. NOPSEMA is providing advice, assistance and support to dutyholders to ensure offshore energy activities can continue to be undertaken in a safe and responsible way.

In reprioritising our focus, NOPSEMA has implemented initiatives to support industry in light of the significant impacts of COVID-19 on Australia and overseas.

Immediate actions and initiatives undertaken by NOPSEMA include:

  • Implementation of a new compliance strategy for effectively regulating the offshore industry during the COVID-19 pandemic, available here.

  • Industry surveys to gauge and assess operators’ response to managing risks associated with COVID-19, available here.

  • Publishing exemplar survey results from industry to provide examples of good practice, available here.

  • Introducing a tailored inspections program to prioritise issues relating to COVID-19.

  • Regular input and participation in the Resources Sector National Coordinating Mechanism Meeting involving government and industry to consider specific requirements of the offshore oil and gas sector in light of COVID-19.

  • Working with the International Regulators Forum to ensure leading global practice is being implemented in Australia.

While the impacts of COVID-19 on the community and industry continue to be assessed and managed, NOPSEMA is ensuring the normal processes of assessment and regulatory oversight are occurring, in accordance with legislative requirements. These processes include the ongoing assessment of necessary permissioning documents for offshore activity to occur, and ensuring dutyholders remain compliant with the requirements of Australia’s regulatory regime.

NOPSEMA would like to thank the offshore industry for its cooperation as we reprioritise to ensure the risks associated with COVID-19 are reduced, limiting opportunities for exposure among the offshore workforce.

Stuart Smith

Chief Executive Officer




  • occupational health & safety
Page last updated: