National Energy Board releases draft 'safety culture' framework for oil and gas

The National Energy Board (NEB) has released a discussion paper titled Advancing Safety in the Oil and Gas Industry: Draft Safety Culture Framework. The NEB will be seeking comments from the public and industry on this body of work until Jan. 30, 2014.
The NEB, the Canada Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, and the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board worked together to propose a common draft safety culture definition and a framework. This body of work was developed to promote learning and a shared understanding of the emerging discipline of Safety Culture across the oil and gas sector in Canada. 

"As federal regulators of the oil and gas industr,y we considered it important to have consistent expectations of regulated companies when it came to Safety Culture," said Gaétan Caron, chair and CEO of the National Energy Board. "With strong, well-implemented management systems and a safety culture that permeates every aspect of the organization, the goal of zero incidents can be a reality."

The board began exploring how to advance safety culture in the oil and gas industry back in 2011. Since that time, the NEB has consulted extensively with international experts on the topic of safety culture. The board also recently amended its National Energy Board Onshore Pipeline Regulations to include requirements for management system processes designed to support the development and maintenance of a healthy safety culture for NEB-regulated companies.

In addition, the NEB recently released its 2013 Safety Forum Report, in which it outlined the concrete actions it is committed to take in order to move forward in achieving the goal of zero incidents. This includes:

• undertaking a public consultation on safety culture in order to develop a clear definition, attributes and indicators
• developing guidance intended to improve the prevention of catastrophic events
• improving how Canadians get the regulatory information they want and need
• setting a path for continual improvement through collaboration with other regulators, and reporting on safety and enforcement tools the board has recently implemented such as administrative monetary penalties.

Comments and questions on the Draft Safety Culture Framework may be submitted to the NEB until Jan. 30 2014, using the following methods:
• Email: [email protected]
• Mail: Safety Culture Consultation?
Attention: Claudine Bradley?
National Energy Board?
444 Seventh Avenue SW ?
Calgary, Alberta
?T2P 0X8
• Fax: 403-292-5503 or 1-877-288-8803 (toll free).