Oil and gas is a highly regulated industry that operates under strict guidelines and is answerable to numerous overlapping federal and state government agencies. Exploration and production operations are regulated by strict rules on environmental management, water management, land access and other operational requirements.
When management and regulatory systems are based on the best available science, better outcomes are achieved.
Research plays an important role in ensuring that the best science is applied to regulation. Depending on the nature, size and potential environmental impact of a project or activity, a range of scientific studies determine the baseline conditions for all environmental values, such as fauna, flora, and air and water quality.
When developing environmental impact statements and management plans, environmental risks are identified and strategies for minimising those risks are evaluated. In cases where the environment is sensitive or the activity is complex, more detailed research may be commissioned.
APPEA member companies work to:
- identify risks and implement strategies for reducing environmental impacts
- collaborate with each other by sharing information and by developing and implementing environmental research and management programs
- inform the community and regulators about what the industry is doing to understand, minimise and manage environmental risks.
APPEA members are committed to improving performance through development of better operating practices, reviewing these practices and sharing this information with stakeholders. The environmental performance of the industry is a key factor in how the oil and gas industry is judged and in its capacity for future growth.
APPEA collects, collates and shares a range of information on the industry’s environmental performance allowing industry to benchmark this performance over time, and to share lessons and identify areas for improvement. Environmental incidents are reported to APPEA from across the whole industry, including the offshore and onshore sectors. The data is aggregated on an incident-specific/facility value in order to identify and investigate trends and potential areas for improvement .