Caspian region: one more element for cooperation

Official investigations have not completed and final figures have not been disclosed with regards to the harm associated with the April 20 accident in the Gulf of Mexico - the largest environmental disaster in the U.S. history. There are a variety of preliminary studies and calculations on this subject, for example, how many jobs were lost in the Gulf region after the entry into force of the six-month moratorium on drilling imposed by the U.S. Department of the Interior in May, or what may be the economic damage to the economy of coastal states if to agree with the proposal of several congressmen after the incident to remove all of the independent operating companies (independents) from production. These figures and data are well known and have been published in the media outlets or in the form of special reports. But it is clear that general damages - both economic and ecological and human losses (within 85 days prior to the elimination of leakage, 4.9 million barrels of oil spilled into the ocean, the coastal zone with a length of 350-450 km struk, killing 11, wounding 17 persons) - are very large, and its consequences, particularly environmental, has not yet appeared fully.

The disaster on the coast of the United States prompted the Europeans to revise legislation on exploration and production of oil from offshore drilling rigs and oil platforms. Given the fact that 90 percent of oil and 60% of gas in the European Economic Area is made on the offshore fields. In October this year the European Commission sent an official letter to the Parliament and Council of Europe, which proposes to consider the introduction of new standards related to mining oil and gas in the territorial waters of EU countries. If such a catastrophe occurs on the coast of Europe, it will to some extent affect all countries of the Union. The matter is that only in the north-eastern Atlantic, there are over thousands of offshore rigs for the development of hydrocarbons, in the Mediterranean Sea - more than one hundred. However, they are small in the Baltic and Black seas. It should also take into account the exploration and production in the immediate vicinity of the European maritime borders: the waters of Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Libya, Tunisia, Croatia, Turkey and Ukraine.

In general, the level of security on offshore platforms in the EU is high, but there are differences and elements of inconsistency both in the legislation of individual countries, and in the requirements and safety procedures of various oil companies. To maximize control and reduce the risks there is a necessity for a more harmonious and coherent system of standards for offshore oil production. Recognizing this need, the European Commission put forward a number of new legislative proposals aimed at the highest (read hard) standards for safety, emergency preparedness and adequate response to them, which may become mandatory for all EU member states, and which today are followed by only several companies and member countries. The official letter to the European Commission stated that the proposal will find a form of the bill in early 2011.

The Communication covers standards on the prevention, the response and the financial liability:

-        Granting permits: When granting licences for new drillings, Member States will have to make sure that the oil companies meet key EU requirements: Companies must have a contingency plan and prove that they have the financial means available to them to pay for environmental damage caused in the event of an accident.

-         Controls: Oil platforms are controlled by national authorities. These supervision tasks of national authorities should be evaluated by independent experts.

-        Standards for safety equipment: Technical standards will ensure that only control equipment meeting the highest safety standards will be allowed. This includes in particular blow out preventers.

-        Damages/Response: Oil companies have to clean up and remedy the damage caused to the environment following an accident within a zone of maximal 200 nautical miles from the coast. The European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), presently focussing on pollution caused by ships will also help on those caused by oil platforms.

-        International: The Commission will work for implementing existing international conventions and new common initiatives.

Europeans very responsibly approached this issue because they understand that a catastrophe similar to that in the U.S. can dramatically affect the energy security, the preservation of jobs, the environment, that is, the whole economy of the European Union. Realizing that any human activity is somehow related to the risk, they are nevertheless willing to incur costs in order to make the system as stable as possible.

Nobody, including in the Caspian Sea, are fully insured from incidents like that occurred on the coast of the United States, although the conditions in the Caspian Sea are easier, there is no depth there. Intensive development of new hydrocarbon fields in the Caspian region, increase in production, plans to build trans-Caspian pipelines to diversify the supply of Central Asian oil and gas to Europe, more than a dozen of rigs and fixed platforms, scattered over a vast area - these and other factors have long created the need for cooperation of the Caspian countries on the issue of overall preparedness for possible large-scale oil spills.

"Kazakhstan today is not ready for large-scale oil spills on the third level, similar to that which emerged in the Gulf of Mexico. That is the assessment of Kazakh experts, which I voiced when speaking at a recent meeting of the National Council. The prevention of disasters connected with oil production in the Caspian Sea was discussed there," he head of the KazMunaiGas labor and environmental protection department, Nurlan Sirazhev, has said.

The head of SOCAR's environmental department Azer Aliyev said all possible risks are evaluated during the preparation of energy projects in Azerbaijan, particularly taking into account all issues that may arise in the wells, as the geological character, and in the process of drilling and exploitation. All these issues are reflected in the decisions. In addition, he said the Ministry for Emergency Situations (MES), which is the national authority responsible for disaster relief and emergency spills and industrial accidents, has all the necessary facilities and equipment to liquidate consequences of the disaster.

Such a degree of readiness for such emergencies and the possibility of a rapid response in other coastal neighbors is not clear. However, given the specificity of the Caspian Sea, as well as common interests in the matter of production and diversification of hydrocarbon resources, the cooperation and verification of hours on this issue is vital for all Caspian states. It could take many forms, both in law and in practical terms. Initiatives of the European Commission may, in this case, serve as a good example.

Georgia reveals number of subscribers of five largest providers
Georgia reveals number of subscribers of five largest providers
Income of Internet providers operating in Georgia up
Income of Internet providers operating in Georgia up
MagtiCom leads with highest ARPU rate in Georgia
MagtiCom leads with highest ARPU rate in Georgia
Loading Bars
Latest
Iran interested in constructive work on liberated border lands of Azerbaijan - ambassador (VIDEO)
Kazakhstan’s DAMU supports new terminal construction in Shymkent int'l airport
LUKOIL significantly increases gas production in Uzbekistan
Data for transactions in foreign currency on Turkmen Commodity Exchange for Sept. 2020
Georgia, Turkey have excellent level of cooperation and dialogue in field of economics - Embassy
CSTO activity does not depend on spontaneous momentary desire of member-states - Russian expert
Azerbaijan's Az-Granata hikes 9M2020 revenues from export of its products
Azerbaijan's deputy PM appeals to Russia regarding Russian MP's illegal visit to Karabakh
Namakhvani HPP project - energy project of century, Georgian minister says
Kazakhstan's electric power distributing company opens tender for transformers installation
Azerbaijan destroys another UAV of Armenian troops
Persimmons export from Uzbekistan increases for 9M2020
Georgia reveals volume of exported persimmons
Volume of electricity generated by Turkmenistan’s Mary power plant revealed
Azerbaijani Prosecutor General's Office gives updates on civil casualties, damages
There is no future for second Armenia within internationally designated borders of Azerbaijan - Azerbaijani FM
Protest rally against Ganja terror was held in Budapest
Prices of Azerbaijani oil continue to grow
The slogan “Karabakh is Azerbaijan” was raised at the rally of the US President
Karabakh conflict will continue until Pashinyan admits reality - Russian general
Uzbekistan, St. Korea to expand effective mechanisms for info exchange in tax area
Georgia reports 1,759 new coronavirus cases, 350 recoveries
Uzbekistan’s Central Bank keeps refinancing rate unchanged
Kazakhstan increases import of cars from Turkey
Armenia must draw conclusions from Moscow's clear position on Karabakh conflict - Turkish government
Co-financed areas to be increased in Georgia
Four more Armenian UAVs neutralized - MoD
Non-resident investors' interest in securities issued by Georgian government grows
Armenian Armed Forces intensively shelling Tartar, Aghdam and Aghjabadi districts - MoD
Azerbaijan discloses information about flora, fauna of occupied territories
Uzbekhydroenergo to directly attract financing in international markets, Fitch Ratings
Why Kashmiris around the world celebrate 27 October as a Black Day?
UK retail sales growth beat expectations in September
Uzbekistan’s 9M2020 volume of financial services revealed
UN Country Office ready to provide humanitarian aid to affected people in Azerbaijan
Emerson gets multi-million dollar contract for Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli
Georgia approves air quality management plan for Rustavi
Turkmenistan names volume of planned rice harvesting in Lebap region
Armenian appeal to NATO is another misleading diplomatic offensive of Yerevan - US expert
A framework agreement of cooperation between IsDB and Standard Chartered Bank
IsDB Group and UAE Ministry of Economy co-organise first digital edition of Annual Investment Meeting on 20-22 October 2020
Oil demand for petrochemicals to decline in advanced world
Famous UK-based poetess of Azerbaijani origin appeals on Armenian aggression against Azerbaijan (VIDEO)
First mobile connection in Karabakh!
Global demand for jet fuel to peak around 2030
Diesel consumption to peak later this decade
Azerbaijani currency rates for October 23
Iran and Russia to lift visa requirements
German Commerzbank ready to expand partnership with Turkmenistan
OSCE Minsk Group's co-chairman from Russia goes to US Washington for meetings on Karabakh
Almost all countries to see lower oil demand in 2021 than in 2019
Iran lifts rice import ban
Timing of US Secretary of State's meeting with Azerbaijani Foreign Minister announced
Members of Nizami Ganjavi International Center send letter President Aliyev
Oil prices to be higher than projected levels in 2020
Uzbekistan reveals its COVID-19 data for October 23
Iran reduces cars imports from Turkey
Azerbaijan's 9M2020 exports to Ukraine increases
Cars export to Georgia decreases, Turkish Ministry of Trade
Processes automation and robotization in digitalization of fuel and energy complex carried in Kazakhstan
Cars export from Turkey to Iraq decreases for 9M2020
Ambassador Extraordinary, Plenipotentiary of Japan to Turkmenistan completes diplomatic mission
UN comments on upcoming meeting of Azerbaijan, Armenian Foreign Ministers in Washington
Azerbaijani soldier addresses people in connection with coronavirus (VIDEO)
Azerbaijan - our home, our homeland, says Azerbaijani soldier of Jewish origin (VIDEO)
Latest situation at front line on Oct. 23
Servicemen of Armenia refused to get engaged in battles and left their positions - Azerbaijani MoD
Important territories, high grounds liberated as result of operations by Azerbaijan Army - MoD
Azerbaijan approves procedure for maintaining personal records of insured persons
Amount of value added tax paid by private sector down in Georgia
Georgia reveals number of subscribers of five largest providers
Income of Internet providers operating in Georgia up
Britain signs first major post-Brexit trade deal with Japan
Kazakhstan’s total number of COVID-19 cases surpasses 110,000
Israeli aircraft attack Gaza military sites in response to rockets firing
Chinese mainland reports no new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases
Intel reports 4 pct drop in third quarter revenue
U.S. sanctions three new Iranian organizations for alleged election disinformation
Israel says Gazan militants fire 2 rockets into southern Israel
Turkey confirms 2,102 daily COVID-19 patients, 355,528 in total
Moscow records another 62 coronavirus deaths
Trump tests negative for coronavirus ahead of debate: aide
France extends curfew as COVID second wave surges in Europe
Armenians commit provocation during sanctioned protest action of Azerbaijani youth in Poland (PHOTO)
WHO reports record daily rise in coronavirus cases across the globe
ANAMA disseminates info on missile attack on Azerbaijan’s Kurdamir by Armenia (PHOTO)
Car exports to Israel declines, Turkish Trade Ministry
Situation when significant part of Azerbaijan's territory is lost can't last forever, Vladimir Putin
Armenia discloses number of servicemen killed by Azerbaijani army
We already started to plan our future agricultural development with respect of liberation of territories - President Aliyev
Without normalization of relations with Turkey and with Azerbaijan Armenia has no future - President Aliyev
If Armenia makes constructive steps and liberate territories of course, we will open all communications - President of Azerbaijan
Popular Front Party, and Musavat Party going against national interests of Azerbaijan - President Aliyev
With TAP pipeline everything is on the schedule, says president of Azerbaijan
If any country assumes role of mediator, this country must be neutral, says Azerbaijani president
International monitors, peace-keeping forces one of last issues, which had to be addressed - President Aliyev
All the regions of Azerbaijan must be liberated, says President Ilham Aliyev
Azerbaijan is fighting itself, we don’t need any foreign fighters - President Aliyev
There will be no referendum in Nagorno-Karabakh - President Aliyev
If we are attacked, we must not only defend ourselves, but also launch a counter-attack - President Aliyev
All news