The U.S. Department of Interior’s (DOI ) Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (Bureau) has issued a notice requesting comments on its estimate of the time required and cost of the reporting and recordkeeping elements of 30 C.F.R. part 250, subpart H, Oil and Gas Production Safety Systems, pertaining to Outer Continental Shelf (OCS ) operations as well as related notices to lessees and operators “that clarify and provide additional guidance on some aspect of the regulations.” 76 Fed. Reg. 50,748 (8/16/11). Under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, DOI is authorized to prescribe rules and regulations to administer leasing on the Outer Continental Shelf.
The Bureau “uses the information submitted under subpart H to evaluate equipment and/or procedures that lessees propose to use during production operations, including evaluation of requests for departures or use of alternative procedures. Information submitted is also used to verify the no-flow condition of wells to continue the waiver of requirements to install valves capable of preventing backflow.” Bureau inspectors also use the records “to verify compliance with testing and minimum safety requirements.” The Bureau has the authority to approve chemical-only fire prevention systems instead of water systems based on information submitted under subpart H. It seeks comments on its estimate of 47,021 hours and $482,309 as the annual time and non-hour cost burden by October 17, 2011.