Effective environmental consultation for offshore petroleum activities

Article published in the Regulator | Issue 6: 2013 

In the course of preparing an environment plan and before any petroleum activity can commence in NOPSEMA’s jurisdiction, an operator must first consult with the people or organisations “whose functions, interests or activities may be affected” by the activity.

Operators should view stakeholder consultation not only as a legislated requirement but an opportunity to build understanding about a proposed activity among affected stakeholders and to learn how those stakeholders view the activity, its risks, impacts, and control measures. Measures adopted as a result of consultation may assist operators to demonstrate in their submission to NOPSEMA that the risks and impacts of their proposed activity are reduced to as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP).