A new report from the International Association of Oil & Gas Producers (OGP) confirms the old adage that ‘standards are like toothbrushes, everyone has one, but nobody wants to use yours.’ The report, ‘Regulators’ use of Standards1’ reflects use of standards in regulatory documentation, particularly for materials, equipment, systems and structures for the offshore petroleum industry. Standards usage comparison from around 20 countries’ found 1,140 different standard titles cited of which 87% were referenced by only one regulator! Standards emanated from no less than 60 different international, national and industry bodies.
Standards from the American Petroleum Institute dominate, with 225 references, including 49 from the API Manual of Petroleum Measurement. ISO follows with 152 of the regulatory standards referenced (59 from ISO/TC 67). Elsewhere, regulatory standards often overlap and duplicate each other—notably for offshore structures and pipelines. Most references are to undated revisions of standards. Compliance appears to be voluntary in most jurisdictions. The study prepares future OGP interaction with regulators via the International Regulators Forum (IRF) and will support further work on ISO/TC67.
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