Nine environmental organizations across Europe have written an appeal to the European Commissioner for Energy, urging that offshore oil drilling regulations are strengthened as part of a Commission proposal that is expected shortly.

Nine environmental organizations across Europe have written an appeal to the European Commissioner for Energy, urging that offshore oil drilling regulations are strengthened as part of a Commission proposal that is expected shortly.

The letter was sent to Commissioner Günther Oettinger by Seas At Risk and Oceana on behalf of several other groups calling for essential changes to the way offshore oil drilling is managed in Europe.

Two key demands put to the Commissioner include the need for an EU wide regulator and the requirement of comprehensive liability coverage.

The need for action at an EU level has been made clear since recent reports into drilling practices both within Europe, and the US, have shown that national authorities are failing to adequately regulate offshore drilling operators. Safety claims made by the industry are being overly relied upon, and operators are failing to take effective safety measures.

Regulation at EU level is seriously lacking and several gaps exist within the authorization processes, which often lack consistency when it comes to technical evaluation or environmental impacts assessments.

Photograph by the US Coast Guard

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