IADC Chairman Meets Governor on E&P Access
2008 IADC chairman John Lindsay of Helmerich & Payne joined producer representatives in a Denver meeting with Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter to express concerns about proposals of the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) to limit E&P activity in the state. Draft regulations would suspend drilling operations for three months each year, allegedly in the interest of wildlife protection. Not only would that discourage contractors from working in the state, Mr Lindsay argued, but the drilling suspension could be as long as five months, considering the time needed for rig mobilization and de-mobilization.
EU Ministers Announce New Working Time Proposal
After years of political impasse, EU ministers came to a political agreement on the way forward with a new Working Time Directive (WTD). This agreement still must be formally adopted and run the gauntlet of EU Parliamentary scrutiny, but as currently drafted, it would be acceptable to the offshore E&P industry. It would solve the “Jaeger” issue, which involves an European Court of Justice decision holding that any time an employee is at the “call” of the employer constitutes working time. That decision would make it virtually impossible for most EU employers to manage shift cycles, including traditional offshore rotas. The sticking point these many years had been the UK’s insistence on an “opt out” from the Directive for employees wanting to work longer than the 48-hour weekly maximum. Under a compromise, a Member State could choose a 12-month reference period – a key objective of IADC for offshore work – but must relinquish the opt-out. If choosing to retain the opt-out, the reference period’s limited to six months.