TROMSØ, Norway -- The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has invited Det Norske Veritas (DNV) to head a project to harmonize industry standards for health, safety, and the environment in the Barents Sea. Both Russian and Norwegian participants will be involved. The standards will contribute to a level of safety at least as high as that in the North Sea and also accounts for the demanding conditions in the High North, DNV says. The project is the first to be realized under the "Barents 2020" initiative, with a budget of NOK 27 million ($4.6 million).
The objective is to ensure current and future oil and gas activities and shipping movements in the Barents Sea conform to standards appropriate for the extreme conditions. The aim is to arrive at standards that are seen as relevant by the industry, both in Norway and Russia, DNV says.
Work will take place in three phases. The first phase is to map existing standards. The second phase will be a workshop to identify and prioritize issues. In the last phase, expert groups will be established to propose specific recommendations for standards.