Australian maritime authority calls for overhaul of oil and gas infrastructure decommissioning policy

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The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) is calling on the Australian government to overhaul its policies and regulations regarding the dismantling, processing, recycling, and disposal of offshore oil and gas infrastructure. The MUA, along with Macquarie University’s Centre for Energy and Natural Resources Innovation and Transformation, launched a report in Canberra, highlighting the need for the government to focus on decommissioning and recycling of offshore installations. The report examines Australia’s legal obligations and domestic laws in this area, identifies gaps in the existing framework, and provides recommendations for effective government policy.

According to the MUA, Australia has a $60 billion opportunity in the removal and recycling of retired oil and gas infrastructure. The Union claims that many companies have been trying to avoid their legal and ethical obligation to safely remove their underwater and floating equipment. The report emphasizes the importance of high standards onshore to achieve safety, economic, and environmental outcomes offshore.

The MUA’s Assistant National Secretary, Adrian Evans, states that the union is advocating for a sustainable and clean withdrawal from offshore oil and gas. They believe that comprehensive removal and recycling of disused offshore equipment is necessary, especially as Australia focuses on decarbonizing its economy and diversifying its renewable energy supplies.

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