Outer Continental Shelf

News & Analysis as of

Senator John Kennedy’s Letter to President Donald Trump: A First Step in Reviving the Oil & Gas Industry in Louisiana

In December of 2016, Republican John Kennedy won the United States Senate runoff election in Louisiana. On the campaign trail, Senator Kennedy promised to do his part in strengthening the declining oil and gas industry in...more

Kitty Hawk NC offshore wind auction set

U.S. plans to auction ocean sites off North Carolina for commercial offshore wind energy development advanced last week, as the federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management scheduled a commercial lease sale for the sites for...more

BOEM Suspends Implementation of New Financial Assurance Requirements

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced Friday, January 6, that it would suspend the implementation of the new financial assurance requirements relating to decommissioning obligations of lessees’ facilities on...more

“Mighty Difference Between a Living Thump and a Dead Thump” – BSEE’s “Universal Thump” Invalidated; District Court Holds that BSEE...

In a dramatic reversal of a prior and equally dramatic, watershed administrative decision of the Interior Bureau of Land Appeals (IBLA) upholding the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s (BSEE) regulatory...more

California Sues Federal Government Alleging Inadequate Environmental Review of Offshore Drilling Proposal

In one of her last major legal actions before leaving office as California’s Attorney General, Kamala Harris, along with the California Coastal Commission (jointly the “Attorney General”), filed suit against various federal...more

Policy Predictions: How will Trump's 100-Day Plan Affect U.S. Energy Industry?

The American landscape is littered with failed prognostications about what new Presidential administrations would or would not ? and could or could not ? accomplish. Every new President faces the challenge of transforming...more

Environmental Groups Sue Federal Agencies Again in Unending Legal Battle Over Offshore Oil Development

On November 11, 2016, the Environmental Defense Center (“EDC”) and Santa Barbara Channelkeeper jointly filed suit against several federal agencies including the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and the Bureau of Safety and...more

Offshore Crewing Requirements: Could It Make Things Worse?

It has been years (2009) since I last wrote an article discussing the availability of U.S. citizens to work offshore in support of oil and gas projects during a downturn in the economy. And now, it is even worse. With the...more

NY offshore wind lease auction set

The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management has issued a Final Sale Notice, setting December 15 as the date for auctioning the right to lease sites in federal waters off New York for commercial offshore wind...more

Russia Moves on the Regulation of its Arctic Continental Shelf Resources

In the course of the meeting held in September 2016 between President Putin and the Russian government, Mr Sergey Donskoy, the Minister for Natural Resources and the Environment, announced that it had been decided to impose a...more

Offshore Companies Face Surge in BSEE Enforcement Actions and Penalties

In recent years, offshore companies have witnessed a marked uptick in the number of enforcement actions undertaken by the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE). Operators face more BSEE inspections, Incidents...more

Kitty Hawk NC offshore wind leasing

The U.S. Department of the Interior has proposed leasing federal ocean space offshore North Carolina for commercial offshore wind development. On August 12, 2016, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced a proposed...more

OCSLA Coverage for Land Injuries Has Limits

James Baker, Jr. v. Director, OWCP; Gulf Island Marine Fabricators, LLC, U.S. Fifth Circuit No. 15-60634 (August 19, 2016). In this case the Court of Appeals affirmed the Administrative Law Judge’s (ALJ) determination that...more

CBP Increases Jones Act Enforcement

Last month, United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the creation of the National Jones Act Division of Enforcement (JADE). JADE will work with CBP and industry partners on coastwise trade, with an end goal...more

Another Step Toward North Carolina Offshore Wind: Proposed Offshore Wind Farm Lease Announced

The U.S. Department of the Interior has just announced the next step in the years-long process toward the development of wind energy facilities off the coast of North Carolina. In a notice published in the Federal Register...more

The New JADE: Energizing Jones Act Enforcement

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently announced the creation of a new enforcement division in the New Orleans Field Office focused solely on the Jones Act: The National Jones Act Division of Enforcement...more

Three Reasons BOEM’s Updated Financial Assurance and Risk Management Requirements Are Unenforceable

The Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has finally issued its promised Notice to Lessees (NTL) No. 2016-N01, “Requiring Additional Security,” which supersedes NTL No. 2008-N07, “Supplemental Bond...more

Three Reasons Why BOEM's Updated Financial Assurance and Risk Management Requirements are Unenforceable

The Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has finally issued its promised Notice to Lessees (NTL) No. 2016-N01 “Requiring Additional Security,” which supersedes NTL No. 2008-N07 “Supplemental Bond...more

Is it a new day for Jones Act enforcement? Maybe. A practical look at coastwise concerns

The Jones Act (46 U.S.C. § 55102) provides that the transportation of merchandise between coastwise US points is prohibited unless performed by vessels that are US-built, owned, and documented. US Customs and Border...more

ONRR Expands Civil Penalty Liability for Federal and Indian Mineral Lessees

The Department of the Interior’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue (“ONRR”) accounts for and collects royalties owed on production from federal and Indian mineral leases onshore and on the Outer Continental Shelf (“OCS”). ...more

CBP Announces the “JADE”—A New Enforcement Division for the Jones Act

Action Item: The creation of the National Jones Act Division of Enforcement (“JADE”) signals that U.S. Customs and Border Protection has made Jones Act outreach and enforcement a national priority. U.S. and foreign...more

U.S. Coast Guard Updates Marine Casualty Reporting Forms

Action Item: The U.S. Coast Guard released an updated version of the CG-2692 forms for reports of marine casualties, commercial diving casualties, and outer continental shelf-related casualties. Vessel owners and operators...more

BOEM Releases Long Awaited New Financial Assurance Notice to Lessees and Operators

The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) released its long awaited new Notice to Lessees and Operators (NTL) updating the procedures and criteria used to determine when and if additional supplemental financial assurance...more

Regulating Exploration on the Arctic OCS: Interior Finalizes Rules for Oil and Gas Exploratory Drilling on the Arctic Outer...

On July 7, almost a year and a half after the proposed rules were published, the U.S. Department of the Interior’s (DOI) Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE)...more

Part the Seas: Federal Report Finds Offshore Fracking has No Significant Impact

On May 27, 2016, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (“BOEM”) and the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (“BSEE”) jointly released a Programmatic Environmental Assessment (“PEA”) for well stimulation treatment...more

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