Improving consultation and transparency of offshore oil and gas – draft regulations

Closes 16 Nov 2018

Opened 8 Oct 2018


In November 2017, the government announced changes arising from a review of the consultation and transparency requirements for offshore petroleum (oil and gas) activities.

These reforms will ensure the Australian public has a better understanding of the process used to decide where, when and how offshore petroleum activities take place and ensure more information on environmental management is made public.

Reforms include:

  • requiring publication of full environment plans on submission by the titleholder and on acceptance by NOPSEMA
  • formalising a public comment period on environment plans for exploration activities, including seismic surveys
  • improved public consultation on potential new offshore petroleum exploration areas
  • a community engagement program to provide the public with more information on the petroleum approvals processes for activities in Commonwealth waters

Proposed regulatory amendments for comment

Draft amendments to the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage (Environment) Regulations 2009 have been developed to implement the first two of these initiatives, along with an explanatory document to provide further information on the proposed changes.

The proposed amendments do not represent final government policy. The final regulatory framework will be informed by submissions received during the comment period, and is expected to be in place by mid-2019.

Draft Amendments (word)
Draft Amendments (pdf)

Explanatory Document (word)
Explanatory Document (pdf)


We welcome submissions on the proposed amendments by 16 November 2018. Submissions will be published on this website unless marked as confidential.

Provide your submission

Consultation forums

We will be holding information sessions in Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne to provide further information on the proposed amendments. 

Perth: Tuesday 30 October, 9.30am – 12:00pm [Register]

Perth: Wednesday 31 October, 9.30am – 12:00pm [Register]

Adelaide: Thursday 1 November, 10.00am – 12.30pm [Register]

Melbourne: Friday 2 November, 9.30am - 12:00pm [Register]

Please register by Friday 26 October 2018.

Next steps

Following the consultation period, we will revise the proposed regulation amendments, taking into account submissions received. Final amendments will then be provided to the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia for consideration and approval, before being submitted to the Federal Executive Council.


For more information email


Provide your submission


  • Sectoral peak bodies
  • Offshore petroleum exploration and production companies
  • Energy industry (including industry bodies)
  • Governments and institutions


  • Resources