This chapter reviews the environmental management aspects of the decommissioning of offshore structures, with particular reference to the United Kingdom Continental Shelf. After some brief background material and a discussion of the principles involved, the topic is described in terms of three separate levels. Level one is defined by the minimum requirements, as set out in the legal framework and government guidelines and requirements. The second level is represented by a set of guidelines, agreed by the operating companies and published by the association that represents them, the United Kingdom Offshore Operators Association (UKOOA). These go somewhat beyond the legal minimum, and provide a management system and an environmental checklist for all offshore operations, of which decommissioning is just one. Finally, an examination of the specific case of Brent Spar will illustrate how Shell fulfilled all requirements to the letter, went some way beyond even UKOOA’s guidelines, and still encountered major difficulties. The management issue at this point goes beyond the quantitative ticking off of tasks and conditions, and into the softer qualitative areas of politics and sociology, social responsibility and ethics.
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- The Environmental Management Aspects of Decommissioning Offshore Structures
- Springer London
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