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Offshore platform warning

20 May 2015

Owners and operators contemplating the dismantling of offshore platforms may not be fully aware of their legal responsibilities in relation to the presence of hazardous materials, an industry specialist has warned.

Asbestos risk management specialists Lucion Environmental is taking steps to remind the oil and gas sector that under the terms of the EU Ship Recycling Regulation 2013, offshore platforms and rigs are formally required to hold an Inventory of Hazardous Materials (IHM).

The move follows the IMO’s adoption of the Hong Kong International Convention for the safe and environmentally sound recycling of all ships. However, under the definitions included in the regulations, a ‘ship’ means a vessel of any type whatsoever operating or having operated in the marine environment. 

To further clarify the situation, Lucion is now working with the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) to develop a set of guidelines and instructions on the requirements for compliance with the standards and on the specific production of an IHM. 

Phil Rozier, head of oil and gas sector at Lucion Environmental, said: "With a substantial number of North Sea platforms and rigs scheduled for decommissioning and dismantling over the next decade and beyond, it is important that steps are taken now to formally identify and record the locations of any potentially hazardous materials."