IADC Drilling Lexicon: Standardized industry terms to help regulators globally

Posted on 28 May 2013

The IADC Drilling Lexicon, one of many new initiatives by IADC, is intended to provide a forum for critical review and analysis of terms that are used in relation to drilling operations, particularly those commonly used for regulatory purposes. Information that will be used to populate the website is being drawn from a wide variety of sources, including internationally recognized standards. Above is a preview screen capture of the Lexicon website, still under development.

The IADC Drilling Lexicon, one of many new initiatives by IADC, is intended to provide a forum for critical review and analysis of terms that are used in relation to drilling operations, particularly those commonly used for regulatory purposes. Information that will be used to populate the website is being drawn from a wide variety of sources, including internationally recognized standards. Above is a preview screen capture of the Lexicon website, still under development.

By Amy Rose, IADC director of external relations

The IADC Drilling Lexicon website, now under development, will provide a forum for critical review and analysis of terms used in drilling operations, particularly those commonly used for regulatory purposes.

“More and more countries are becoming energy producers, but many of them lack the experience and knowledge at the legislative level to write regulations that are consistent with international standards,” commented Stephen Colville, IADC president and CEO.

“The International Regulators Forum, in collaboration with the European Union, is looking at how countries can work together to find ways to establish regulatory regimes,” he added. “One of the things IADC was asked to do, as the industry’s authoritative body in the drilling space, is to help identify and establish a lexicon of drilling terms that are commonly used to provide assistance in developing regulations.”

The information that IADC will use to populate the website is being drawn from a wide variety of sources that can be broadly categorized as:

• Legislation: definitions drawn from the enactments of a legislative body of a government;

• Regulations: definitions drawn from a rule or order issued by an executive authority or regulatory agency of a government;

• Regulatory guidance: definitions drawn from non-legally binding guidance issued by an executive authority or regulatory agency of a government;

• Internationally recognized standards: definitions drawn from material that has been developed and approved by a standards developing organization that enjoys widespread international recognition; and

• IADC guidelines: definitions drawn from material that has been developed and approved by IADC.

“The supply of information that we are drawing from is inexhaustible and always changing,” said Alan Spackman, vice president of IADC offshore division.

“However, in compiling this information, IADC is helping to ensure that the terminology used in standards and regulations is readily available to people who may be drafting regulations in the future and enable them to work toward consistency,” he continued.

“Already we are seeing that terms vary from legislature to legislature, country to country and state to state, depending on the regulations already in place in each area,” said Brigid Ewald, consultant for the IADC Lexicon project.

“To give but one example, the term ‘owner’ has a somewhat different meaning under the laws and regulations of Norway versus Australia versus the US, due to differences in expectations of responsibilities and liabilities put on an owner in each jurisdiction. We anticipate that terms in the Lexicon will contain definitions relevant to every country with drilling operations,” Ms Ewald said.

The IADC Drilling Lexicon and its complementary website will be evergreen. IADC will use, and hopes that others will use, the information to influence, improve and, where appropriate, standardize the use of terminology in legislation, regulations and standards.

Members and outside sources will be empowered and encouraged to contribute to the Lexicon to keep it up to date and relevant.

“The Drilling Lexicon project is one of the many initiatives that IADC is launching to improve performance in the drilling industry by championing better regulation,” Mr Colville noted.

“We are providing the tools for regulatory authorities to draw up legislation that is appropriate, consistent and transparent across time and geography.”

Register for updates on the website launch.

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