The oil and gas industry has made many significant changes in addressing a major oil spill event such as those involving source control. The International Oil and Gas Producers (IOGP) has introduced many initiatives over the years to guide industry on how to prevent, intervene and respond to such major events. Through the recommendations from the Global Industry Response Group (GIRG) formed by IOGP in 2011, we have seen many of these changes increase safety standards across the board.
Recently, the Subsea Well Response and Source Control Subcommittee (SWRSC) under the guidance of IOGP Wells Expert Committee (WEC) launched a new document called Source Control Emergency Response Planning Guide for Subsea Wells (IOGP Report 594). As industry recognizes the magnitude and complexities of managing a source control event, this document aims to guide stakeholders in recognizing the key elements needed to ensure the best possible response plans are put in place. This guide serves as an excellent starting point for operators who may feel overwhelmed by the planning work in responding to a source control event.
No one stakeholder can manage the scale of such an event. Multiple stakeholders across the industry and regulatory authorities must come together to ensure the most effective response is underway if the situation arises. Having a well thought plan will help to coordinate the various stakeholders towards the desired goal.