The NSTA is making more and more data freely available to industry, academia and others. This data is invaluable in all of the operations on the UKCS from exploration to decommissioning and in assisting the drive to net zero for example through identifying potential locations for carbon storage sites.

In 2016 and 2017 the NSTA commenced new data regulations under the Energy Act 2016. These were:

  • The power to request information and samples under section 34 of the Energy Act
  • The requirement to appoint an Information and Samples Coordinator (ISC)
  • The requirement to submit Information and Samples Plans (ISPs) in connection with certain licence events.

Additionally, in 2017, it consulted on new regulations for the retention and disclosure of Information and Samples. These regulations were laid before Parliament and commenced in 2018.

In February 2019 the NSTA launched the National Data Repository (NDR) and on the 1st March 2019 issued its first reporting notices under section 34 of the Energy Act, requesting the statutory reporting of technical information including well, geophysical, production, infrastructure and pipeline data to the NSTA and well samples to the British Geological Survey (BGS).

Further Reading on information and samples:

Energy Act 2016

Regulations on retention of information and samples

Regulations on the disclosure of information and samples

2017 consultation on proposed retention and disclosure regulations

2018 consultation response

Guidance on the retention of Information and Samples

Guidance on Reporting and disclosure of Information and Samples 

Petroleum Operations Notice (PON) 9:

PON9b (for onshore activity)

Guidance on ISPs and ISCs

Section 34 Notices

As mentioned above, on 1st March 2019, the NSTA issued two reporting notices under section 34 (s.34 notices). One was a retrospective notice covering the routine reporting of information and samples from 2018, the other was a notice to cover the routine reporting of information and samples related to ongoing activity in 2019. As they were routine reporting notices they were sent to the ISCs of all “relevant persons” (as defined under the Energy Act 2016). Routine reporting notices are issued every January to cover the coming year.

The notices are available here:

2018 (here)

2019 (here)

2020 (here)

2021 (here)

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