Archive for the ‘Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’ Category

Deepwater Horizon Joint Investigation Team Releases Final Report

September 15, 2011 Comments off

Deepwater Horizon Joint Investigation Team Releases Final Report
Source: Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement/U.S. Coast Guard

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE)/U.S. Coast Guard Joint Investigation Team (JIT) today released its final investigative report on the April 20, 2010, Deepwater Horizon explosion, loss of life, and resulting oil spill.

The report is comprised of Volume I, covering the areas of investigation under the jurisdiction of the Coast Guard; Volume II, covering the areas of the investigation under BOEMRE jurisdiction; and a supplement to Volume I – the Final Action Memo from Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Bob Papp.

The JIT was formed on April 27, 2010, by a convening order of the Departments of the Interior and Homeland Security to investigate the causes of the Deepwater Horizon explosion, loss of life, and resulting oil spill, and to make recommendations for safe operations of future oil and gas activities on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). The JIT held seven sessions of public hearings, received testimony from more than 80 witnesses and experts, and reviewed a large number of documents and exhibits pertaining to all aspects of the investigation.

Volume I, released April 22, 2011, includes findings on five aspects of the disaster under Coast Guard jurisdiction – including the explosions on the Mobile Offshore Drilling Unit (MODU) Deepwater Horizon; the resulting fire; evacuations; the flooding and sinking of the Deepwater Horizon; and the safety systems of the MODU and its owner, Transocean. The Coast Guard’s Final Action Memo details actions directed by Adm. Papp, as a result of the JIT’s work, reflecting the Coast Guard’s commitment to all of those affected by this tragic yet historic event and underscoring its commitment to the stewardship of our maritime environment.

Volume II includes findings on the causes, both direct and contributing, of the Macondo blowout and the resulting explosion and fire aboard the Deepwater Horizon. In Volume II, the JIT details evidence developed during the investigation and concludes that BP, Transocean and Halliburton’s conduct in connection with the Deepwater Horizon disaster violated a number of federal offshore safety regulations under BOEMRE’s jurisdiction. Volume II also includes recommendations for the continued improvement of the safety of offshore operations.


BOEMRE Releases Study on Incorporating Climate Effects into Oil-Spill Risk Analysis

September 2, 2011 Comments off

BOEMRE Releases Study on Incorporating Climate Effects into Oil-Spill Risk Analysis
Source: Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE)

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) today released a new report evaluating how climate change may affect the environmental conditions measured and used in mathematical modeling for oil-spill trajectory analysis in the Arctic region. Key findings from the study include recommendations on the scientific methodology to use in explaining recent, rapidly changing Arctic conditions.

“As we make decisions regarding potential energy development in the Arctic, we need the best scientific data available to understand the impact of the changing climate,” said BOEMRE Director Michael R. Bromwich. “This study will help improve our computer modeling and analyses and adds to the growing body of research regarding effects of climate change on the Arctic marine environment.”

The two-year study included a literature review of the most current oceanographic knowledge available on the Arctic, particularly with respect to the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, and focused on the effects of climate change on sea ice, circulation, river discharge, and other environmental conditions in the Alaska Arctic. The report includes a summary of results and feedback from leading oceanographic and atmospheric scientists who attended a three-day workshop held in March 2011 as part of the project.

The report recommends that BOEMRE organize a data archive that includes information from national, international and industry sources for atmospheric, sea ice and oceanic conditions in the U.S. Arctic in order to document major environmental changes. Other recommendations include that the agency conduct analyses to determine how the expected path of a hypothetical oil spill may change with respect to changes in climate variability; and run multiple hindcast models using statistics over a five-year period to see the impact of the different models on movement of a hypothetical oil spill. BOEMRE uses hindcasting for oil-spill trajectory analyses when making decisions regarding lease sales and uses the analyses in other National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) documents.

Ocean current patterns in the Arctic, especially in near shore regions, are strongly influenced by factors such as winds, precipitation and evaporation, river runoff and sea ice coverage. Rapid changes in any of these could lead to alterations of the currents.

+ Full Report (PDF)


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 360 other followers