BSEE Safety Panel Meeting Next Week

This will be the sixth meeting of the year-old Ocean Energy Safety Advisory Committee. BSEE also is accepting proposals for oil spill response research projects.

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) Director Jim Watson announced the Ocean Energy Safety Advisory Committee's sixth public meeting will take place Jan. 9-10 in Washington, D.C. The agenda includes subcommittees' activities to date on oil spill prevention, spill containment, spill response, and safety management systems, the Arctic, and the proposed ocean energy safety institute. On the second day, the committee will address interim recommendations from the six subcommittees for consideration and action, including lessons learned and next steps.

The committee's chair is Dr. Tom Hunter, former director of the Sandia National Laboratory. Members include representatives of federal agencies, the offshore oil and gas industry, academia, and non-governmental organizations. The committee provides policy advice to the secretary of the Interior through the BSEE director on improving all aspects of offshore energy safety.

The meeting will be held at the South Interior Building Auditorium, 1951 Constitution Ave. NW.

BSEE also is accepting proposals until Jan. 23 on potential oil spill research projects. It has as much as $1.2 million available for research in these topic areas during 2013:

  • consolidating previous research and identifying gaps related to how the chemical and physical properties of various crude oils impact marine oil spill response options, such as dispersant use, skimming, and in situ burning
  • consolidating previous research on dispersant effectiveness and identifying the gaps in knowledge about using marine dispersants
  • temporary storage of recovered oil in the Arctic will require more study to determine whether the traditional temporary storage options will withstand the conditions there; the project should also any shortcoming and provide recommendations for further research and development
  • the impact of periods of low light on oil spill recovery operations and potential remediation
  • assessment of the use of bioremediation products (bacteria or other organisms) versus chemical dispersants currently listed in the National Contingency Plan Product Schedules to minimize harmful effects when responding to an offshore oil spill
  • White papers are due Jan. 23and must be submitted in compliance with the instructions contained in solicitation E13PS0004 posted on the Federal Business Opportunities website, www.fbo.gov.

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