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Member Country Profile - Norway

Country: Norway
Organisation: The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA)
Regime Scope: The PSA is the relevant agency responsible for safety, emergency preparedness and the working environment in the petroleum industry. The regulatory regime applies to offshore installations and exploration, production and exploitation operations, as well as to their associated onshore processing facilities and refineries.
Administering Agency /Arrangements: The PSA is an independent, government agency, which is accountable and provides advice to the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.
Legislation Type: Acts, Royal Decrees and Regulations. These formulate requirements in a performance-oriented fashion. The requirements are extensively substantiated by referencing recognised national and international standards.
Extent Of Government Approval: The PSA does not approve any plans or applications as such, but requires duty holders to apply for consent to commence and carry out various petroleum industrial activities/operations (specified by requirements of the regulations).
Nature Of Duties Imposed: All companies have a general duty to ensure safe operations and compliance with requirements of acts, statutory rules and regulations as well as their own set requirements for the operations. The supervisory activities of the PSA do not exempt the duty holders of this duty.
Physical Objects In The Regime: Offshore installations and onshore facilities. These include exploration and production installations, including FPSO's, MODU's, flotels, subsea arrangements, wells, pipelines and off- and onshore processing plants. The main functions of pipe laying barges, lifting barges, diving or other support vessels are also regulated by the regime.
Assurance Mechanisms: The PSA assures that the industry is adhering to statutory regulations by conducting audits and verifications, and by - if necessary - employing its delegated regulatory powers.
Financial Basis: Government general budget allocation. Expenses related to regulatory supervision, such as staff's working hours and travel expenses, must be refunded by the duty holders in accordance with rates set by the government. The refunded costs are paid into the Treasury. Typically, these amount to about 55 percent of the PSA's total operational budget.
Environmental Regulation Responsibilities: The PSA's role with regard to protecting the natural environment is directed primarily at the preventive side by helping to ensure that environmentally harmful incidents do not occur. In addition, the PSA has a role in connection with the operator's emergency preparedness for stopping a leak or blow-out.
Oil Spill Response: Issues related to oil spill response is the responsibility of the Norwegian Environment Agency. The Norwegian Coastal Administration (NCA) is responsible for the operational side of such clean-ups. Both the NCA and the Norwegian Clean Seas Association for Operating Companies (Nofo) will answer questions about the equipment used to clean up spills.
Transparency:

According to the Open Files Act, anyone has a right to insight into all governmental documents and information, with a few exceptions related to protection of personal information, national security, etc. The PSA receives around 2-3000 claims for insights per year of which only around 3 percent are declined.

The PSA's webpage is probably the most informative source of information about organisation, regulatory system and activities. The website accounts the day-to-day supervisory activities by publishing all audit reports as well as statutory decisions, and it features a number of articles related to regulatory professional issues. Statistics are posted on the website as annual reports, such as the annual Risk Assessment Report. The majority of the postings are also published in English.

Profile Author: Finn Carlsen, Director for professional competence, PSA
Profile Date: 13 August 2015

 

 
 

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