The Hibernia oil platform was anchored to the seabed in Newfoundland’s offshore 19 years ago this week, and is scheduled to produce its one billionth barrel of oil in 2017

The Hibernia oil platform was anchored to the seabed in Newfoundland’s offshore two decades ago. Environmentalists say Canada's new proposals for offshore drilling and safety give the industry too much latitude to regulate itself.
Photo Credit: CBC

Concerns over changes to Canada’s offshore drilling policy

Several environmental agencies have expressed concerns over relatively quiet changes being proposed for offshore drilling.

They say notice for public consultation has been barely advertised, that affected first nations tribes have not been consulted at all, and that most input into regulation for the petroleum industry over the past year has come from the industry itself.

Susanna Fuller (PhD marine biology) is senior marine coordinator at the Ecology Action Centre based in Nova Scotia.

Listen
Susanna Fuller (PhD), marine conservation co-ordinator for the Ecology Action Centre
Susanna Fuller (PhD), marine conservation co-ordinator for the Ecology Action Centre © CBC

The proposed changes are known as the Frontier and Offshore Regulatory Renewal Initiative or FORRI.

Environmental and other affected groups, including the World Wildlife Fund-Canada say the proposed changes could have “profound implications for safety and environmental protection”

Susanna Fuller says the proposed changes are going in the opposite direction to those of the U.S. for example which has been strengthening regulations.

In many cases the changes place more responsibility for safety and clean-up of spills in the hands of the oil and gas industry. In many cases they are also vague, saying for example such things as reducing risk to “as low as reasonably practicable”, and response to accidents should be “as soon as the circumstances permit”.

The 14-billion Hebron platform was towed out to its location about 150 km southeast of St John’s Newfoundland this summer.
The 14-billion Hebron platform was towed out to its location about 150 km southeast of St John’s Newfoundland this summer. Environmentalists say new government proposals for the petroleum industry regulations for safety, spill prevention and cleanup are being weakened not strengthened. © ExxonMobil

Fuller also says the proposed changes seem to be in conflict with other environmental regulations and laws.

The Ecology Action Centre and others are asking that FORRI be halted, and that offshore oil and gas drilling be controlled by other more stringent existing government agencies and laws.

Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Economy, Environment, International, Politics, Science and Technology

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

*