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Houston (9 June 2017) –Today, BSEE announced the extension of leases doubling the amount of time offshore oil and gas operators have to coordinate development operations and retain their leases in federal waters of the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf. In a statement, BSEE Director Scott Angelle said, “This rulemaking extends the time from 180 days to one year between production, drilling or well-reworking operations on a lease. These additional months mean companies doing business on the Outer Continental Shelf will have more planning flexibility, which will help them be more cost efficient, create more jobs and maximize the economic benefit for the entire nation.”
In response, IADC President Jason McFarland stated, “IADC members support the expeditious and safe development of the US OCS. Offshore drilling contractors employ thousands of rig personnel and rely on contracts with operators for business and utilization of their rigs. If operators do not have leases, drilling contractors do not work. If the extended time for lease development directed by Congress, and implemented by BSEE, has its intended effect of helping operators develop the leases they’ve obtained, and in doing so, utilize services of drilling contractors more expeditiously, then we applaud the action taken. We would not wish to see the opportunity provided by Congress for development used to simply delay lease relinquishment.”
Congress directed BSEE to make this amendment in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017. A notice of the final rule, titled, Oil and Gas and Sulphur Operations on the Outer Continental Shelf – Lease Continuation Through Operations, is available in today’s Federal Register.
Since 1940, the International Association of Drilling Contractors (IADC) has exclusively represented the worldwide oil and gas drilling industry. IADC’s mission is to catalyze improved performance for the drilling industry by enhancing operational integrity and championing better regulation to facilitate safer, cleaner and more efficient drilling operations worldwide. For more information, visit the IADC website at www.iadc.org.