May 1, 2001
National Ocean Industries Association

The National Ocean Industries Association was formed in 1972 to ensure that the American offshore oil and natural gas industry could access hydrocarbon resources beneath the ocean floor. For more than 50 years, industry leaders have been perfecting methods of extracting hydrocarbons from the bottom of the sea, and these enormous technological advancements have enabled the industry to safely recover offshore oil and natural gas to provide the energy that Americans need while keeping firmly within the bounds of our nation's highest environmental standards.

Who We Are

The National Ocean Industries Association is the only national trade association representing all segments of the offshore industry with an interest in the exploration and production of the hydrocarbon resources located beneath federal ocean waters.

The NOIA membership is comprised of more than 280 companies engaged in activities ranging from producing to drilling, engineering to marine and air transport, offshore construction to equipment manufacture and supply, telecommunications, to finance and insurance. NOIA focuses on two core issues:

  • Securing reliable access to the nation's valuable hydrocarbon resources in order that they may be developed, produced and supplied in an environmentally responsible manner
  • Improving the economic climate for NOIA members to do business in the United States.

How We Formed

After years of debate as to who had control over coastal lands (states or the federal government), President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation in 1953 directing the Secretary of the Interior to lease submerged lands for mineral development. According to the act, the coastal states were responsible for the area extending to about three miles from their shores (about 10 miles for Texas and the Gulf coast of Florida), while the federal government would have jurisdiction over the land extending seaward from the state line of demarcation to approximately 200 miles offshore.

This area, called the federal Outer Continental Shelf (OCS), was designated for mineral exploration, development and production. The OCS Lands Act of 1953 mandated that the federal government lease the submerged lands to develop resources on the OCS, and the nation's federal offshore leasing program was born.

In 1969, a blowout on a production platform off the coast of Santa Barbara, Calif., spilled oil in the sea, causing serious but temporary environmental damage. Shortly thereafter, access to the OCS was shut down in response to public outcry. With the program in jeopardy, industry experts concerned about the impact this could have on the reliability and security of America's energy supply joined together to form the National Ocean Industries Association - a unique organization interested in keeping the federal offshore leasing program alive by promoting the safe and efficient development of OCS lands.

Today, nearly 30 years after NOIA's founding, the U.S. offshore industry's record of environmental performance is unparalleled anywhere in the world, with government statistics showing that oil is safely produced and transported 99.9996% of the time.

  • NOIA provides its members with the latest information regarding federal legislation and regulatory issues affecting the industry. The Washington Report, a bi-weekly newsletter produced by NOIA, keeps members up to date on these and other important issues.
  • NOIA monitors federal legislation and regulation and works to favorably impact policy decisions concerning the offshore industry. NOIA also supports its members by providing advice on policy issues and by facilitating access to the regulatory and legislative processes.
  • NOIA's Legislative Strategy Group facilitates a collaborative industry-wide strategy for effectively impacting legislative and regulatory decisionmaking. This group, comprised of representatives from trade associations and member companies, meets monthly to determine shared interests and goals.
  • NOIA hosts the two largest annual gatherings of senior executives in the offshore oil and gas industry. Because of NOIA's unique membership of top-level executives, our meetings present our members with the rare opportunity to personally discuss industry business, strategy and insights.
  • NOIA is active in public affairs and engages in constructive dialogue with the media, legislative and regulatory officials, and the general public on offshore issues. NOIA also conducts issue-specific seminars for senior executives and ensures that the media has access to industry's views on newsworthy issues.
  • NOIA promotes and supports outreach programs that educate the public about energy issues and help the nation make informed decisions concerning the use of energy. NOIA is a benefactor to the National Energy Education Development (NEED) Project and is a supporter of the Rig Museum in Morgan City, La., and the Ocean Star in Galveston, Texas.