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SR 1999 No. 228 Regulations as amended, taking into account amendments up to SLI 2009 No. 383
Principal Regulations
Administered by: Resources, Energy and Tourism
Registered 18 Dec 2009
Start Date 17 Dec 2009
End Date 31 Dec 2011
Table of contents.

Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage (Environment) Regulations 2009

Statutory Rules 1999 No. 228 as amended

made under the

This compilation was prepared on 17 December 2009
taking into account amendments up to SLI 2009 No. 383

[Note: The Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Act 1967 was repealed on 01/07/2008 by the Offshore Petroleum (Repeals and Consequential Amendments) Act 2006 (No. 17 of 2006) however this instrument remains in force under the transitional provisions in clause 4 of Schedule 6 to the Offshore Petroleum Act 2006.]

Prepared by the Office of Legislative Drafting and Publishing,
Attorney-General’s Department, Canberra


Contents

Part 1                          Preliminary                                                                 

                        1   Name of Regulations [see Note 1]                                      4

                        2   Commencement                                                                4

                        3   Object of Regulations                                                        4

                        4   Definitions                                                                        4

                        5   References to an activity                                                  10

Part 2                          Environment plans                                                   

Division 2.1                 Requirement for an environment plan                             

                        6   Accepted environment plan required for an activity            11

                        7   Operations must comply with the accepted environment plan  11

                        8   Operations must not continue if new or increased environmental risk identified 12

Division 2.2                 Acceptance of an environment plan                                

                        9   Submission of an environment plan                                  13

                       10   Time limit for accepting or not accepting an environment plan 13

                       11   Acceptance of an environment plan                                  14

Division 2.3                 Contents of an environment plan                                    

                       12   Contents of an environment plan                                      16

                       13   Environmental assessment                                               16

                       14   Implementation strategy for the environment plan              17

                       15   Reporting etc arrangements                                              19

                       16   Other information in the environment plan                          20

Division 2.4                 Revision of an environment plan                                    

                       17   Revision because of a change, or proposed change, of circumstances or operations  21

                       18   Revision on request by the Regulator                                21

                       19   Revision at the end of each 5 years                                  22

                       20   Form of proposed revision                                               23

                       21   Acceptance of a revised environment plan                        23

                       22   Effect of non-acceptance of proposed revision                23

Division 2.5                 Withdrawal of acceptance of an environment plan          

                       23   Withdrawal of acceptance of environment plan                  24

                       24   Steps to be taken before withdrawal of acceptance           24

                       25   Withdrawal of acceptance not affected by other provisions 25

Part 3                          Incidents, reports and records                             

                       26   Notifying reportable incidents                                           26

                    26A   Written report of reportable incidents                                27

                    26B   Reporting recordable incidents                                         28

                       27   Storage of records                                                          29

                       28   Making records available                                                  29

Part 4                          Miscellaneous                                                           

Division 4.1                 Discharges of produced formation water                        

                       29   Discharge of produced formation water                            32

                    29A   Tests and reports of discharges of produced formation water 33

Division 4.2                 Operators of activities                                                     

                       30   Interpretation for Division                                                 33

                       31   Notification of appointment of operator                            34

                       32   Operator to give details                                                    34

                       33   No requirement to give information more than once           35

                       34   Regulator may decline to consider submission if information is not given        36

                       35   Regulator to keep register                                                36

                       36   Proof of appointment as operator                                    36

Division 4.3                 Other procedural matters                                                

                       37   Service, delivery and lodgment of documents                   37

Notes                                                                                                          38

 


Part 1                 Preliminary

  

1              Name of Regulations [see Note 1]

                These Regulations are the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage (Environment) Regulations 2009.

2              Commencement

                These Regulations commence on 1 October 1999.

3              Object of Regulations

                The object of these Regulations is to ensure that any petroleum activity or greenhouse gas storage activity carried out in an offshore area is:

                (a)    carried out in a manner consistent with the principles of ecologically sustainable development; and

               (b)    carried out in accordance with an environmental plan that has:

                          (i)    appropriate environmental performance objectives and standards; and

                         (ii)    measurement criteria for determining whether the objectives and standards have been met.

4              Definitions

         (1)   In these Regulations, unless the contrary intention appears:

accepted, in relation to an environment plan, means a plan accepted by the Regulator under regulation 11.

Act means the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act 2006.

activity means a petroleum activity or a greenhouse gas activity.

environment means:

                (a)    ecosystems and their constituent parts, including people and communities; and

               (b)    natural and physical resources; and

                (c)    the qualities and characteristics of locations, places and areas; and

               (d)    the heritage value of places;

and includes

                (e)    the social, economic and cultural features of the matters mentioned in paragraphs (a), (b), (c) and (d).

environmental impact means any change to the environment, whether adverse or beneficial, that wholly or partially results from an activity of an operator.

environmental performance means the performance of an operator in relation to the environmental performance objectives and standards mentioned in an environment plan accepted under these Regulations.

environmental performance objective means the goals of an operator that are mentioned in an environment plan accepted under these Regulations.

environmental performance standard means a statement of performance required of a system, an item of equipment, a person or a procedure, that is used as a basis for managing environmental risk, for the duration of the activity in accordance with the objectives of the regulations, as set out in an environment plan accepted under these Regulations.

environment plan, in relation to an operator of an activity, means an environment plan submitted by the operator that is:

                (a)    accepted and revised from time to time under these Regulations;

but does not include:

               (b)    if the environment plan is accepted in part — that part of the plan that is not accepted; or

                (c)    an environment plan for which the acceptance has been withdrawn.

facility includes a structure or installation of any kind.

greenhouse gas activity:

                (a)    means:

                          (i)    any operations or works in an offshore area carried out under a greenhouse gas instrument, other authority or consent under the Act or regulations made under the Act; and

                         (ii)    any activity relating to greenhouse gas exploration, injection or storage which may have an impact on the environment; and

               (b)    includes:

                          (i)    seismic or other surveys; and

                         (ii)    drilling; and

                        (iii)    construction and installation of a facility; and

                        (iv)    operation of a facility; and

                         (v)    significant modification of a facility; and

                        (vi)    decommissioning, dismantling or removing a facility; and

                       (vii)    construction and installation of a greenhouse gas pipeline; and

                      (viii)    operation of a greenhouse gas pipeline; and

                        (ix)    significant modification of a greenhouse gas pipeline; and

                         (x)    decommissioning, dismantling or removing a greenhouse gas pipeline; and

                        (xi)    injection and storage of greenhouse gas.

greenhouse gas instrument:

                (a)    means an authority granted by instrument under the Act for the carrying out of a greenhouse gas activity; and

               (b)    includes:

                          (i)    a greenhouse gas assessment permit;

                         (ii)    a greenhouse gas-related pipeline licence;

                        (iii)    an infrastructure licence;

                        (iv)    a greenhouse gas search authority;

                         (v)    a greenhouse gas special authority;

                        (vi)    a greenhouse gas holding lease;

                       (vii)    a greenhouse gas injection licence.

greenhouse gas instrument holder:

                (a)    means the registered holder of a greenhouse gas instrument; and

               (b)    includes:

                          (i)    a permittee; and

                         (ii)    a lessee; and

                        (iii)    a licensee; and

                        (iv)    a pipeline licensee; and

                         (v)    an infrastructure licensee; and

                        (vi)    a registered holder of a greenhouse gas search authority; and

                       (vii)    a registered holder of a greenhouse gas special authority for the activity.

instrument holder, for an activity, means:

                (a)    a greenhouse gas instrument holder; and

               (b)    a petroleum instrument holder.

nominated address, for an operator, means the address of the operator of which notice has been given under paragraph 32 (3) (a).

operator, for an activity, means:

                (a)    if there is a person recorded by the Regulator as the operator of the activity under regulation 35 — that person; or

               (b)    in any other case:

                          (i)    if there is a petroleum instrument — the person responsible to the petroleum instrument holder for the overall management of operations of the activity (whether or not the operations have commenced) — that person; or

                         (ii)    if there is a greenhouse gas instrument — the person responsible to the greenhouse gas instrument holder for the overall management of operations of the activity (whether or not the operations have commenced); or

                        (iii)    if there is no petroleum instrument or greenhouse gas instrument — the person performing the activity.

petroleum activity:

                (a)    means:

                          (i)    any operations or works in an offshore area carried out under a petroleum instrument, other authority or consent under the Act or the regulations; and

                         (ii)    any activity relating to petroleum exploration or development which may have an impact on the environment; and

               (b)    includes:

                          (i)    seismic or other surveys; and

                         (ii)    drilling; and

                        (iii)    construction and installation of a facility; and

                        (iv)    operation of a facility; and

                         (v)    significant modification of a facility; and

                        (vi)    decommissioning, dismantling or removing a facility; and

                       (vii)    construction and installation of a petroleum pipeline; and

                      (viii)    operation of a petroleum pipeline; and

                        (ix)    significant modification of a petroleum pipeline; and

                         (x)    decommissioning, dismantling or removing a petroleum pipeline; and

                        (xi)    storage, processing or transport of petroleum.

petroleum instrument:

                (a)    means an authority granted by an instrument under the Act for the carrying out of a petroleum activity; and

               (b)    includes:

                          (i)    a petroleum exploration permit; and

                         (ii)    a petroleum retention lease; and

                        (iii)    a petroleum production licence; and

                        (iv)    a petroleum-related pipeline licence; and

                         (v)    an infrastructure licence; and

                        (vi)    a petroleum access authority; and

                       (vii)    a petroleum special prospecting authority.

petroleum instrument holder, for a petroleum activity, means the registered holder of a petroleum instrument for the activity, and includes a permittee, lessee, licensee, pipeline licensee or registered holder of an access authority or special prospecting authority for the activity.

produced formation water means natural aqueous fluid recovered from a petroleum reservoir in association with the petroleum.

recordable incident, for an operator of an activity, means an incident arising from the activity that:

                (a)    breaches a performance objective or standard in the environment plan that applies to the activity; and

               (b)    is not a reportable incident.

Regulator means:

                (a)    in relation to a petroleum activity — the Designated Authority; or

               (b)    in relation to a greenhouse gas storage activity — the responsible Commonwealth Minister.

reportable incident, for an operator of an activity, means an incident relating to the activity that has caused, or has the potential to cause, moderate to significant environmental damage.

revise, for an environment plan, includes extend or modify.

the regulations means regulations (including these Regulations) made under the Act.

         (2)   A definition in these Regulations applies to each use of the word or expression in these Regulations unless the contrary intention appears.

Note   Other words and expressions used in these Regulations have the meaning given by section 7 of the Act. For example:

·      construct

·      Designated Authority

·      Greater Sunrise visiting inspector

·      greenhouse gas assessment permit

·      greenhouse gas holding lease

·      greenhouse gas injection licence

·      greenhouse gas pipeline

·      greenhouse gas project inspector

·      greenhouse gas search authority

·      greenhouse gas special authority

·      greenhouse gas substance

·      infrastructure licence

·      infrastructure licensee

·      lease area

·      lessee

·      licence area

·      licensee

·      offshore area

·      permit area

·      permittee

·      petroleum

·      petroleum access authority

·      petroleum exploration permit

·      petroleum pipeline

·      petroleum production licence

·      petroleum project inspector

·      petroleum retention lease

·      petroleum special prospecting authority

·      pipeline licensee

·      registered holder

·      responsible Commonwealth Minister.

5              References to an activity

                A reference in these Regulations to an activity includes, where the context permits, a reference to:

                (a)    a proposed activity; and

               (b)    any stage of an activity.


 

Part 2                 Environment plans

Division 2.1           Requirement for an environment plan

6              Accepted environment plan required for an activity

         (1)   The operator of an activity is guilty of an offence if:

                (a)    the operator carries out the activity; and

               (b)    there is no environment plan in force for the activity.

Penalty:   80 penalty units.

Note 1   Environment plan in force for the activity, operator and activity are defined in regulation 4.

Note 2   Subsection 4B (3) of the Crimes Act 1914 allows a court to fine a body corporate up to 5 times the maximum amount the court could fine a natural person convicted of the same offence.

Note 3   Offences under these Regulations are continuing offences and a fine may be imposed for each day during which the offence continues — see section 4K of the Crimes Act 1914.

      (1A)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (2)   This regulation does not affect any other requirement under the regulations for a consent to construct or install, or a consent to use, a facility.

Note   The term ‘the regulations’ is defined in regulation 4 to mean ‘..regulations (including these Regulations) made under the Act’.

7              Operations must comply with the accepted environment plan

         (1)   The operator of an activity must not carry out the activity in a way that is contrary to:

                (a)    the environment plan in force for the activity; or

               (b)    any limitation or condition applying to operations for the activity under these Regulations.

Penalty:   80 penalty units.

      (1A)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (2)   Subregulation (1) does not apply to the operator if the operator has the consent in writing of the Regulator to carry out the activity in that way.

         (3)   The Regulator must not give a consent under subregulation (2) unless there are reasonable grounds for believing that the way in which the activity is to be carried out will not result in the occurrence of any significant new environmental impact or risk, or significant increase in any existing environmental impact or risk.

8              Operations must not continue if new or increased environmental risk identified

         (1)   The operator of an activity is guilty of an offence if:

                (a)    the operator carries out the activity after the occurrence of:

                          (i)    any significant new environmental impact or risk arising from the activity; or

                         (ii)    any significant increase in an existing environmental impact or risk arising from the activity; and

               (b)    the new impact or risk, or increase in the impact or risk, is not provided for in the environment plan in force for the activity.

Penalty:   80 penalty units.

      (1A)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (2)   Subregulation (1) does not apply to the operator if the operator submits a proposed revision of the environment plan in accordance with regulation 17 and the Regulator has not refused to accept the revision.

Note   Under r 17 the operator is required to submit a proposed revision of the environment plan before, or as soon as practicable after, the occurrence of a significant new, or significantly increased, environmental impact or risk.

Division 2.2           Acceptance of an environment plan

9              Submission of an environment plan

         (1)   Before commencing an activity the operator of the activity must submit an environment plan for the activity to the Regulator for the offshore area.

         (2)   An environment plan may be submitted for 1 or more stages of the activity if the operator and the Regulator so agree.

         (3)   An environment plan:

                (a)    must be in writing, or in a form accepted by the Regulator; and

               (b)    if the Regulator approves — may relate to a specified activity in one or more identified locations specified in the plan.

10            Time limit for accepting or not accepting an environment plan

         (1)   Within 30 days after an operator submits an environment plan, the Regulator must:

                (a)    accept the plan under regulation 11; or

               (b)    refuse to accept the plan; or

                (c)    give notice in writing to the operator stating that the Regulator is unable to make a decision about the plan within the period of 30 days, and setting out a proposed timetable for consideration of the plan.

         (2)   A decision by the Regulator to accept, or refuse to accept, an environment plan is not invalid only because the Regulator did not comply with subregulation (1) in relation to the plan.

         (3)   This regulation applies to an environment plan resubmitted under subregulation 11 (2) in the same way that it applies to the plan when first submitted.

11            Acceptance of an environment plan

         (1)   The Regulator must accept the environment plan if there are reasonable grounds for believing that the plan:

                (a)    is appropriate for the nature and scale of the activity or proposed use; and

               (b)    demonstrates that the environmental impacts and risks of the activity will be reduced to as low as reasonably practicable; and

                (c)    demonstrates that the environmental impacts and risks of the activity will be of an acceptable level; and

               (d)    provides for appropriate environmental performance objectives, environmental performance standards and measurement criteria; and

                (e)    includes an appropriate implementation strategy and monitoring, recording and reporting arrangements; and

                (f)    for the requirement mentioned in paragraph 16 (b) — demonstrates that there has been an appropriate level of consultation with authorities, persons and organisations; and

               (g)    complies with the Act and the regulations.

         (2)   If the Regulator is not reasonably satisfied that the environment plan when first submitted meets the criteria set out in subregulation (1), the Regulator must give the operator a reasonable opportunity to modify and resubmit the plan.

         (3)   If, after the operator has had a reasonable opportunity to modify and resubmit the environment plan, the Regulator is still not reasonably satisfied that the plan meets the criteria set out in subregulation (1), the Regulator must refuse to accept the plan.

         (4)   Despite subregulation (3), the Regulator may do either or both of the following:

                (a)    accept the plan in part for a particular stage of the activity;

               (b)    impose limitations or conditions applying to operations for the activity.

         (5)   The Regulator must give the operator notice in writing of a decision by the Regulator:

                (a)    to accept the environment plan; or

               (b)    not to accept the plan; or

                (c)    to accept the plan in part for a particular stage of the activity, or subject to the imposition of limitations or conditions.

         (6)   A decision under paragraph (5) (b) or (c) must set out:

                (a)    the terms of the decision and the reasons for it; and

               (b)    if limitations or conditions are to apply to operations for the activity — those limitations or conditions; and

                (c)    if the activity is to be carried out in the offshore area of a Territory mentioned in section 7 of the Act — a statement or summary of the right, under section 434 of the Act, of reconsideration or review of the decision.

Note   The Regulator may decline to consider a submission unless certain details of the operator are given — see r 34.

         (7)   Within 10 days after receiving a notification that the Regulator has accepted an environment plan under paragraph (5) (a), the operator must submit a summary of the plan to the Regulator for public disclosure.

         (8)   A summary mentioned in subregulation (7):

                (a)    must include the following material from the environment plan:

                          (i)    coordinates of the activity;

                         (ii)    a description of the receiving environment;

                        (iii)    a description of the action;

                        (iv)    details of major environmental hazards and controls;

                         (v)    a summary of the management approach;

                        (vi)    details of consultation already undertaken, and plans for ongoing consultation;

                       (vii)    contact details of the operator’s nominated liaison personnel for the activity; and

               (b)    must be to the satisfaction of the Regulator.

Division 2.3           Contents of an environment plan

12            Contents of an environment plan

                An environment plan for an activity must include the matters set out in regulations 13, 14, 15 and 16.

13            Environmental assessment

Description of the activity

         (1)   The environment plan must contain a comprehensive description of the activity including the following:

                (a)    the location or locations of the activity;

               (b)    general details of the construction and layout of any facility or other structure;

                (c)    an outline of the operational details of the activity (for example, seismic surveys, exploration drilling or production) and proposed timetables;

               (d)    any additional information relevant to consideration of environmental impacts and risks of the activity.

Description of the environment

         (2)   The environment plan must:

                (a)    describe the existing environment that may be affected by the activity, as well as any relevant cultural, social and economic aspects of the environment that may be affected; and

               (b)    include details of the particular relevant values and sensitivities (if any) of that environment.

Description of environmental impacts and risks

         (3)   The environment plan must include:

                (a)    details of the environmental impacts and risks for the activity; and

               (b)    an evaluation of all the impacts and risks.

      (3A)   For the avoidance of doubt, the evaluation mentioned in paragraph (3) (b) must evaluate all the significant impacts and risks arising directly or indirectly from:

                (a)    all operations of the activity, including construction; and

               (b)    potential emergency conditions, whether resulting from accident or any other reason.

Environmental performance objectives and standards

         (4)   The environment plan must include environmental performance objectives, environmental performance standards and measurement criteria that:

                (a)    address legislative and other controls that manage environmental features of the activity; and

               (b)    define the objectives, and set the standards, against which performance by the operator in protecting the environment is to be measured; and

                (c)    include measurement criteria for determining whether the objectives and standards have been met.

Requirements

         (5)   The environment plan must describe the requirements that:

                (a)    apply to the activity; and

               (b)    are relevant to the environmental management of the activity.

14            Implementation strategy for the environment plan

         (1)   The environment plan must contain an implementation strategy for the activity in accordance with this regulation.

         (2)   The implementation strategy must include measures to ensure that the environmental performance objectives and standards in the environment plan are met.

         (3)   The implementation strategy must identify the specific systems, practices and procedures to be used to ensure that the environmental impacts and risks of the activity are continuously reduced to as low as reasonably practicable and that the environmental performance objectives and standards in the environment plan are met.

         (4)   The implementation strategy must establish a clear chain of command, setting out the roles and responsibilities of personnel in relation to the implementation, management and review of the environment plan.

         (5)   The implementation strategy must include measures to ensure that each employee or contractor working on, or in connection with, the activity is aware of his or her responsibilities in relation to the environment plan and has the appropriate competencies and training.

         (6)   The implementation strategy must provide for the monitoring, audit, management of non‑conformance and review of the operator’s environmental performance and the implementation strategy.

         (7)   The implementation strategy must provide for the maintenance of a quantitative record of emissions and discharges (whether occurring during normal operations or otherwise) to the air, marine, seabed and sub-seabed environment, that is accurate and can be monitored and audited against the environmental performance standards and measurement criteria.

         (8)   The implementation strategy must establish and provide for the maintenance of an oil spill contingency plan.

   (8AA)   The oil spill contingency plan must:

                (a)    be kept up-to-date; and

               (b)    include emergency response arrangements.

      (8A)   The response arrangements in the oil spill contingency plan must be tested:

                (a)    when they are introduced; and

               (b)    when they are significantly amended; and

                (c)    not later than 12 months after the most recent test; and

               (d)    for a new location for the activity that is added to the environment plan after the response arrangements have been tested and before the next test is conducted — when the location is added to the plan; and

                (e)    for a facility or other structure that becomes operational after the response arrangements have been tested and before the next test is conducted — when the facility or structure becomes operational.

         (9)   The implementation strategy must provide for appropriate consultation with:

                (a)    relevant authorities of the Commonwealth, a State or Territory; and

               (b)    other relevant interested persons or organisations.

       (10)   The implementation strategy must comply with the Act, the regulations and any other environmental legislation applying to the activity.

15            Reporting etc arrangements

                The environment plan must include arrangements for:

                (a)    recording, monitoring and reporting information about the activity (including information required to be recorded under the Act, the regulations and any other environmental legislation applying to the activity) sufficient to enable the Regulator to determine whether the environmental performance objectives and standards in the environment plan are met; and

               (b)    reporting to the Regulator at intervals agreed with the Regulator, but not less often than annually.

16            Other information in the environment plan

                The environment plan must contain the following:

                (a)    a statement of the operator’s corporate environmental policy;

               (b)    a report on all consultations between the operator and relevant authorities, interested persons and organisations in the course of developing the environment plan;

                (c)    details of all reportable incidents in relation to the proposed activity.

Division 2.4           Revision of an environment plan

17            Revision because of a change, or proposed change, of circumstances or operations

         (1)   The operator of an activity must submit to the Regulator a proposed revision of the environment plan before the commencement of any new activity, or any significant modification, change, or new stage of an existing activity, not provided for in the environment plan in force for the activity.

         (2)   The operator must submit a proposed revision of the environment plan before, or as soon as practicable after:

                (a)    a change in the instrument holder for, or operator of, the activity; or

               (b)    the occurrence of any significant new environmental impact or risk, or significant increase in an existing environmental impact or risk, not provided for in the environment plan in force for the activity; or

                (c)    the occurrence of a series of new environmental impacts or risks, or a series of increases in existing environmental impacts or risks, which, taken together, amount to the occurrence of:

                          (i)    a significant new environmental impact or risk; or

                         (ii)    a significant increase in an existing environmental impact or risk;

                        that is not provided for in the environment plan in force for the activity.

18            Revision on request by the Regulator

         (1)   The operator of an activity must submit to the Regulator a proposed revision of the environment plan if the Regulator requests the operator to do so.

         (2)   A request by the Regulator must be in writing and set out the following:

                (a)    the matters to be addressed by the revision;

               (b)    the proposed date of effect of the revision;

                (c)    the grounds for the request.

         (3)   The operator may make a submission in writing to the Regulator stating the operator’s reasons for 1 or more of the following matters:

                (a)    why the revision should not occur;

               (b)    why the revision should be in different terms from the proposed terms;

                (c)    whether or not the operator gives other reasons — why the revision should take effect on a date later than the proposed date.

         (4)   A submission by the operator must be made within 21 days after receiving the request, or within any longer period that the Regulator in writing allows.

         (5)   If a submission complies with subregulations (3) and (4), the Regulator must:

                (a)    decide whether to accept 1 or more of the reasons stated in the submission; and

               (b)    give the operator notice in writing of the decision; and

                (c)    to the extent (if any) that the Regulator accepts the reasons, give the operator notice in writing that varies or withdraws the request in accordance with the decision; and

               (d)    to the extent (if any) that the Regulator does not accept the reasons, give the operator notice in writing of the grounds for not accepting them.

         (6)   An operator must comply with a request made by the Regulator under this regulation and not withdrawn, or with a request as varied under this regulation, as soon as practicable.

19            Revision at the end of each 5 years

         (1)   The operator of an activity must submit to the Regulator a proposed revision of the environment plan at least 14 days before the end of each period of 5 years, commencing on the latest of the following:

                (a)    the day on which the environment plan is first accepted under regulation 11 by the Regulator;

               (b)    the day on which a revised environment plan submitted under this regulation is accepted under regulation 11 by the Regulator;

                (c)    for a revision of an environmental plan submitted under regulation 17 or 18, the day (if any) notified by the Regulator under subregulation (2).

         (2)   For paragraph (1) (c), the Regulator may notify the operator that the effect of a revision of an environment plan submitted under regulation 17 or 18 is that the period of 5 years mentioned in subregulation (1) starts on the date specified in the notification.

20            Form of proposed revision

                A proposed revision must be in the form of a revised environment plan or, if the operator and the Regulator so agree, a revised part of the environment plan.

21            Acceptance of a revised environment plan

                Regulations 10 and 11 apply to the proposed revision as if:

                (a)    a reference in those regulations to the submission, acceptance or non-acceptance of the environment plan were a reference to the submission, acceptance or non‑acceptance of the proposed revision; and

               (b)    any other reference in those regulations to the environment plan were a reference to the plan as revised by the proposed revision.

Note   Regulation 10 deals with the consideration by the Regulator of an environment plan. Regulation 11 deals with the acceptance of an environment plan.

22            Effect of non-acceptance of proposed revision

                If a proposed revision is not accepted, the provisions of the environment plan in force for the activity existing immediately before the proposed revision was submitted remain in force, subject to the Act and these Regulations, (in particular, the provisions of Division 2.5), as if the revision had not been proposed.

Division 2.5           Withdrawal of acceptance of an environment plan

23            Withdrawal of acceptance of environment plan

         (1)   The Regulator, by notice in writing to the operator
of an activity, may withdraw the acceptance of the environment plan in force for the activity on any ground set out in subregulation (2).

         (2)   For subregulation (1), the grounds are that:

                (a)    the operator or instrument holder has not complied with:

                          (i)    a provision of the Act relating to environmental requirements; or

                         (ii)    a direction given by the Regulator under section 574 of the Act; or

               (b)    the operator has not complied with regulation 7, 8, 17, 18 or 19; or

                (c)    the Regulator has refused to accept a proposed revision of the environment plan.

         (3)   A notice under subregulation (1) must set out:

                (a)    the reasons for the decision; and

               (b)    if the activity is carried out in the offshore area of a Territory mentioned in section 7 of the Act — a statement or summary of the right, under section 434 of the Act, of reconsideration or review of the decision.

24            Steps to be taken before withdrawal of acceptance

         (1)   Before withdrawing the acceptance of an environment plan in force for an activity the Regulator must comply with subregulations (2), (4) and (5).

         (2)   The Regulator must give the operator at least 30 days notice in writing of the Regulator’s intention to withdraw acceptance of the plan.

         (3)   The Regulator may give a copy of the notice to such other persons (if any) as the Regulator thinks fit.

         (4)   The Regulator must specify in the notice a date (the specified date) on or before which the operator (or any other person to whom a copy of the notice has been given) may submit to the Regulator, in writing, any matters for the Regulator to take into account.

         (5)   The Regulator must take into account:

                (a)    any action taken by the operator or instrument holder to remove the ground for withdrawal of acceptance, or to prevent the recurrence of that ground; and

               (b)    any matter submitted to the Regulator before the specified date by the operator or a person to whom a copy of the notice has been given.

25            Withdrawal of acceptance not affected by other provisions

         (1)   The Regulator may withdraw the acceptance of an environment plan in force for an activity on the ground that the operator or instrument holder has not complied with a provision of the Act, or of a regulation mentioned in paragraph 23 (2) (b), even though the operator or instrument holder has been convicted of an offence by reason of the failure to comply with that provision.

         (2)   The operator of, or the instrument holder for, an activity for which the acceptance of an environment plan has been withdrawn by the Regulator on the ground that the operator or instrument holder has not complied with a provision of the Act, or of a regulation mentioned in paragraph 23 (2) (b), may be convicted of an offence by reason of the failure to comply with the provision, even though the acceptance of the environment plan has been withdrawn.


 

Part 3                 Incidents, reports and records

  

26            Notifying reportable incidents

         (1)   The operator of an activity must notify a reportable incident in accordance with this regulation.

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

         (2)   However, it is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against subregulation (1) if the operator has a reasonable excuse.

Note   A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the question whether he or she has a reasonable excuse (see section 13.3 of the Criminal Code).

         (3)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (4)   A notification under subregulation (1):

                (a)    must be given to the Regulator; and

               (b)    must be given as soon as practicable, and in any case not later than 2 hours after:

                          (i)    the first occurrence of the reportable incident; or

                         (ii)    if the reportable incident was not detected by the operator at the time of the first occurrence — the time the operator becomes aware of the reportable incident; and

                (c)    may be oral or in writing; and

               (d)    must contain:

                          (i)    all material facts and circumstances concerning the reportable incident that the operator knows or is able, by reasonable search or enquiry, to find out; and

                         (ii)    any action taken to avoid or mitigate any adverse environment impacts of the reportable incident; and

                        (iii)    the corrective action that has been taken, or is proposed to be taken, to prevent a similar reportable incident.

26A         Written report of reportable incidents

         (1)   The operator of an activity must submit a written report of a reportable incident in accordance with this regulation.

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

         (2)   However, it is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against subregulation (1) if the operator has a reasonable excuse.

Note   A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the question whether he or she has a reasonable excuse (see section 13.3 of the Criminal Code).

         (3)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (4)   A written report under subregulation (1):

                (a)    must be given to the Regulator; and

               (b)    must be given as soon as practicable, and in any case:

                          (i)    not later than 3 days after the first occurrence of the reportable incident; or

                         (ii)    if the Regulator specifies, within 3 days after the first occurrence of the reportable incident, another period within which the report must be provided — within that period; and

                (c)    must contain:

                          (i)    all material facts and circumstances concerning the reportable incident that the operator knows or is able, by reasonable search or enquiry, to find out; and

                         (ii)    any action taken to avoid or mitigate any adverse environment impacts of the reportable incident; and

                        (iii)    the corrective action that has been taken, or is proposed to be taken, to prevent a similar reportable incident.

26B         Reporting recordable incidents

         (1)   The operator of an activity must submit a written report of a recordable incident in accordance with this regulation.

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

         (2)   However, it is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against subregulation (1) if the operator has a reasonable excuse.

Note   A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the question whether he or she has a reasonable excuse (see section 13.3 of the Criminal Code).

         (3)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (4)   A written report under subregulation (1):

                (a)    must be given to the Regulator; and

               (b)    must relate to a calendar month; and

                (c)    must be given as soon as practicable after the end of the calendar month, and in any case not later than 15 days after the end of the calendar month; and

               (d)    must contain:

                          (i)    a record of all recordable incidents that occurred during the calendar month; and

                         (ii)    all material facts and circumstances concerning the recordable incidents that the operator knows or is able, by reasonable search or enquiry, to find out; and

                        (iii)    any action taken to avoid or mitigate any adverse environment impacts of the recordable incidents; and

                        (iv)    the corrective action that has been taken, or is proposed to be taken, to prevent similar recordable incidents.

27            Storage of records

         (1)   The operator of an activity must store and maintain a document or other record mentioned in subregulation (2):

                (a)    for the period of 5 years from the making of the document or other record; and

               (b)    in a way that makes retrieval of the document or other record reasonably practicable.

Penalty:   30 penalty units.

      (1A)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (2)   For subregulation (1), the documents or other records are the following:

                (a)    the environment plan in force for the activity;

               (b)    revisions of the environment plan;

                (c)    written reports (including monitoring, audit and review reports) about environmental performance, or about the implementation strategy, under the environment plan;

               (d)    records of emissions and discharges into the environment made in accordance with the environment plan;

                (e)    records of calibration and maintenance of monitoring devices used in accordance with the environment plan;

                (f)    records and copies of reports mentioned in:

                          (i)    regulations 26 and 26A, relating to reportable incidents; and

                         (ii)    regulation 26B, relating to recordable incidents.

28            Making records available

         (1)   The operator of an activity must make available, in accordance with this regulation, copies of the records mentioned in regulation 27 for the activity.

Penalty:   30 penalty units.

      (1A)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (2)   The operator must make copies of the records available to any of the following persons, on request in writing by the person:

                (a)    the Regulator;

               (b)    a delegate, under section 52 of the Act, of theRegulator;

                (c)    a greenhouse gas project inspector, a petroleum project inspector or a Greater Sunrise visiting inspector.

         (3)   If the person making the request states that copies of the records be made available to an agent of the person, the operator must make the copies available to the agent.

         (4)   However, if the operator:

                (a)    requests a person who is a delegate of the Regulator to produce written evidence of the delegation; or

               (b)    requests a person who is a greenhouse gas project inspector or a petroleum project inspector to produce written evidence of the person’s appointment as a greenhouse gas project inspector or a petroleum project inspector; or

                (c)    requests a person who is a Greater Sunrise visiting inspector to produce written evidence of the person’s appointment as a Greater Sunrise visiting inspector; or

               (d)    requests a person who is an agent to produce written evidence of the person’s appointment as an agent;

the operator is not required to make the records available unless the person produces the evidence to the operator.

         (5)   The copies of the records must be made available:

                (a)    in the case of an emergency relating to the activity — as soon as possible at any time of the day or night on any day during the emergency; or

               (b)    in any other case — during normal business hours on any day, other than a Saturday, a Sunday, or a public holiday at the place where the records are kept.

         (6)   The copies of the records must be made available at the nominated address or, if agreed between the operator and the person making the request (or the person’s agent), at any other place (including by means of electronic transmission to the person or agent at that place).

         (7)   If the records are stored on a computer, the records must be made available in print-out form or, if the operator and the Regulator so agree, in electronic form.


 

Part 4                 Miscellaneous

Division 4.1           Discharges of produced formation water

29            Discharge of produced formation water

         (1)   The operator of an activity must ensure that the concentration of petroleum in any produced formation water discharged into the sea as a result of operations for the activity is not greater than an average of 30mg/L over any period of 24 hours (specified concentration).

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

         (2)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (3)   Nothing in subregulation (1) affects an environmental performance standard, in an environment plan in force for the activity, for a concentration of petroleum in produced formation water discharged into the sea that is less than the specified concentration.

         (4)   Subregulation (1) does not apply to an operator who:

                (a)    has the consent in writing of the Regulator in accordance with subregulation (5) to exceed the specified concentration; and

               (b)    does not exceed any authorised concentration mentioned in the consent.

         (5)   Consent under subregulation (4) may be given by the Regulator only if:

                (a)    the discharge rate of produced formation water to be authorised by the consent is not greater than 0.5 megalitres per day; or

               (b)    the consent is to apply to a period not greater than 48 hours; or

                (c)    the Regulator is satisfied that the purpose of the discharge at the authorised concentration is for operational research that has the potential to improve environmental performance.

         (6)   The Regulator must not give a consent under subregulation (4) unless the operator demonstrates, to the satisfaction of the Regulator, that the proposed activity will not result in:

                (a)    the occurrence of any significant new environmental impact or risk; or

               (b)    a significant increase in any existing environmental impact or risk.

29A         Tests and reports of discharges of produced formation water

         (1)   If produced formation water is discharged into the sea, the operator must:

                (a)    conduct an accepted test at regular intervals to assess the performance of the monitoring equipment; and

               (b)    record the test results.

         (2)   At the request of the Regulator, the operator must produce for inspection the test results mentioned in subregulation (1).

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

         (3)   An offence against subregulation (2) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

Division 4.2           Operators of activities

30            Interpretation for Division

                In this Division:

contact details, for an operator or an agent, means the name and address within Australia, telephone number, facsimile number and electronic address (if any) of the operator or agent.

31            Notification of appointment of operator

         (1)   The instrument holder for an activity must ensure that, at all times, there is an operator of the activity.

         (2)   The operator of an activity is the person responsible to the instrument holder for the overall management and operation of the activity.

         (3)   The instrument holder must notify the Regulator in writing of the name and contact details of the operator before the first submission for an activity is lodged under these Regulations.

         (4)   The instrument holder must notify the Regulator, in writing, of any change of operator of the activity at the earliest practicable opportunity and, if practicable, at least 28 days before the change takes effect.

Note   The operator is not required to give the information if it has already been given in accordance with another requirement of the Act or the regulations — see r 33.

         (5)   Nothing in this regulation affects any duty or responsibility of the instrument holder, under the Act or the regulations, for an activity carried out under the instrument.

32            Operator to give details

         (1)   The operator of an activity must notify the Regulator within 7 days, in writing, of:

                (a)    the appointment of an agent of the operator, in relation to the activity, and the contact details of the agent; or

               (b)    any change of agent; or

                (c)    any change of name (where there is no change of identity) or contact details of the operator or the operator’s agent.

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

      (1A)   However, it is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against subregulation (1) if the operator has a reasonable excuse.

Note   A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the question whether he or she has a reasonable excuse (see section 13.3 of the Criminal Code).

      (1B)   An offence against subregulation (1) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (2)   The operator must include, in any submission to the Regulator under Part 2, the name and contact details of the operator or the operator’s agent.

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

      (2A)   An offence against subregulation (2) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

         (3)   The operator, at all times after operations for the activity have commenced, must maintain, and ensure that the Regulator has notice of:

                (a)    an address of the operator, for communications on matters relating to the activity; and

               (b)    a facsimile number, or electronic mail address, within Australia at which a request for records may be made under regulation 28.

Penalty:   40 penalty units.

Note   The operator is not required to give the information if it has already been given in accordance with another requirement of the Act or the regulations — see r 33.

         (4)   An offence against subregulation (3) is an offence of strict liability.

Note   For strict liability, see section 6.1 of the Criminal Code.

33            No requirement to give information more than once

         (1)   Despite any other provision of this Division, an instrument holder or operator is not required to give information to the Regulator under this Division if, at any relevant time, the information has been given in accordance with any other provision of the Act or the regulations.

         (2)   Subregulation (1) does not apply if the information already given has been lost or destroyed.

34            Regulator may decline to consider submission if information is not given

                Despite any other provision of these Regulations, if an instrument holder for an activity, or an operator of the activity, does not give information to the Regulator in accordance with this Division, and the information has not been given under another law, the Regulator may decline to consider a submission made by the operator under these Regulations and relating to the activity, until the information is given.

35            Regulator to keep register

                The Regulator must maintain a register or other record of information about an operator or agent:

                (a)    mentioned in this Division; and

               (b)    given (whether under this Division or otherwise) to the Regulator.

36            Proof of appointment as operator

         (1)   In proceedings under these Regulations, a document that appears to the court to be a certificate by a Regulator, in accordance with subregulation (2), certifying a statement to the effect mentioned in subregulation (3):

                (a)    is evidence of the truth of the statement; and

               (b)    may be received in evidence without being proved.

         (2)   The certificate must be signed by the Regulator and be expressed to be in accordance with the register or other record maintained by the Regulator under regulation 35.

         (3)   The statement must be to the effect that, on a specified date, or during a specified period, a specified person was the operator for a specified activity.

Division 4.3           Other procedural matters

37            Service, delivery and lodgment of documents

                For these Regulations, unless the contrary intention appears, a notice or other document required or permitted to be given to a person is taken to be given:

                (a)    in the case of service otherwise than by post on an individual — on the day on which the notice or other document is:

                          (i)    delivered to the individual in person; or

                         (ii)    delivered to his or her address for service or last address known to the Regulator; or

               (b)    in the case of service otherwise than by post on a body corporate — on the day on which the notice or other document is delivered to the registered office, or the address for service, of the body corporate; or

                (c)    in the case of service by post on a person — on the day on which the notice or other document would ordinarily be delivered in the due course of post or, if the person establishes that it was delivered on a later day, on that later day.


Notes to the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage (Environment) Regulations 2009

Note 1

The Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage (Environment) Regulations 2009 (in force under the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Act 2006) as shown in this compilation comprise Statutory Rules 1999 No. 228 amended as indicated in the Tables below.

For all relevant information pertaining to application, saving or transitional provisions see Table A.

Table of Instruments

Year and
number

Date of notification
in Gazette or FRLI registration

Date of
commencement

Application, saving or
transitional provisions

1999 No. 228

29 Sept 1999

1 Oct 1999

 

2001 No. 346

21 Dec 2001

21 Dec 2001

2005 No. 318

19 Dec 2005 (see F2005L03952)

20 Dec 2005

R. 4

2009 No. 383

16 Dec 2009 (see F2009L04589)

17 Dec 2009

Table of Amendments

ad. = added or inserted      am. = amended      rep. = repealed      rs. = repealed and substituted

Provision affected

How affected

Part 1

 

R. 1.........................................

rs. 2009 No. 383

R. 3.........................................

rs. 2009 No. 383

R. 4.........................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

Note 1 to r. 4 (2)...................

rs. 2009 No. 383

Note 2 to r. 4 (2)...................

rep. 2009 No. 383

Heading to r. 5......................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 5.........................................

am. 2009 No. 383

Part 2

 

Division 2.1

 

Heading to r. 6......................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 6.........................................

am. 2001 No. 346; 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

Note 1 to r. 6 (1)...................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 7.........................................

am. 2001 No. 346; 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

Heading to r. 8......................

rs. 2005 No. 318

R. 8.........................................

am. 2001 No. 346; 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

Note to r. 8 (2).......................

am. 2005 No. 318

Division 2.2

 

R. 9.........................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

R. 10.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

R. 11.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

Division 2.3

 

R. 12.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 13.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

R. 14.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

R. 15.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 16.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318

Division 2.4

 

R. 17.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

Heading to r. 18...................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 18.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 19.......................................

rs. 2009 No. 383

R. 20.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

Heading to r. 21...................

rs. 2009 No. 383

Note to r. 21..........................

am. 2009 No. 383

Division 2.5

 

R. 23.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 24.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

R. 25.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

Part 3

 

R. 26.......................................

rs. 2001 No. 346; 2005 No. 318

 

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 26A....................................

ad. 2005 No. 318

 

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 26B....................................

ad. 2005 No. 318

 

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 27.......................................

am. 2001 No. 346; 2005 No. 318; 2009 No. 383

R. 28.......................................

am. 2001 No. 346; 2009 No. 383

Part 4

 

Division 4.1

 

R. 29.......................................

am. 2001 No. 346

 

rs. 2005 No. 318

 

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 29A....................................

ad. 2005 No. 318

 

am. 2009 No. 383

Division 4.2

 

R. 30.......................................

am. 2005 No. 318

R. 31.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 32.......................................

am. 2001 No. 346; 2009 No. 383

R. 33.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

Heading to r. 34...................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 34.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

Heading to r. 35...................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 35.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 36.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 37.......................................

am. 2009 No. 383

R. 38.......................................

rep. 2001 No. 346

Division 4.4...........................

rep. 2005 No. 318

R. 39.......................................

rep. 2005 No. 318

Table A                  Application, saving or transitional provisions

Statutory Rules 2005 No. 318

4            Transitional

                The amendments made by Schedule 1 apply in relation to an environment plan that, on or after the commencement of these Regulations, is submitted:

                (a)    to the Designated Authority under regulation 9 of the Petroleum (Submerged Lands) (Management of Environment) Regulations 1999; or

               (b)    for revision under Division 2.4 of the Petroleum (Submerged Lands) (Management of Environment) Regulations 1999.