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Abstract: Offshore Development and the Marine Environment Emerging--Environmental Issues in the Outer Continental Shelf

Debra Beaubien, Robert J. Moran

Energy exploration and production in the outer continental shelf of the Gulf of Mexico are conducted under a comprehensive, environmental legislative and regulatory regime. There are indications that this regime may be evolving in the direction of more restrictive requirements. Anticipating future requirements is important to ensure informed decisions are made by the lawmakers and regulators, and also by the exploration and production industry. Anticipating legislative and regulatory trends could help the industry understand what information would be helpful to lawmakers and regulators, contribute to the industry having an effective voice in the development of requirements, and stimulate the industry to develop alternatives that may be more responsive and cost effective.

Emerging and evolving Gulf of Mexico environmental issues include the discharge of drilling fluids and produced waters, naturally occurring radioactive material, natural resource damage assessment, the Gulf of Mexico program, air emissions, toxic release inventory reporting expansion, and exploration and production associated waste management. Charting a successful course through these issues may require new ways of working--both within the industry and external to the industry.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90983©1994 GCAGS and Gulf Coast SEPM 44th Annual Meeting, Austin, Texas, October 6-7, 1994