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Here you'll find recent updates to regulations related to oil and gas development in B.C. We also may request your input or feedback on proposed changes to the regulation of oil and gas activities that may affect you.

What does Regulatory Affairs do?

We work with our subject matter experts across the Commission to develop amendments to existing Commission Board regulations, and to propose new provisions when needed.

We do our best to incorporate feedback from affected parties into regulatory policy. The feedback is first presented to the Commission's Board of Directors, then we work with provincial legislative drafters to turn approved policy into regulations.

Since the Provincial Government approves some regulations under the Oil and Gas Activities Act (OGAA), we communicate with government staff about potential amendments to those Government regulations, and potential amendments to the Act itself.

Engagement on Regulatory Change - What's up?

The Commission has a policy of continuous improvement for the oil and gas regulatory framework. When a proposal for regulatory change is being considered, engagement will help to inform the best policy change possible, given multiple interests. Engagement with Indigenous Peoples and stakeholders is one way the Commission is working hard through its values of transparency, innovation, integrity, respect and responsiveness to help meet government’s commitment to responsible and inclusive governance.

The Commission is looking to engage people more regularly on proposed policy and regulatory change. We've created this Regulatory Update page to share information, increase transparency and seek feedback on proposed changes to the regulation of oil and gas activities that may affect others. It is our goal to update this page quarterly.

Along with this online update, we may also provide updates via email, social media, webinars, and workshops.

Engagement looks to inform and receive feedback from people on potential regulatory change. It helps the Commission make better decisions by understanding what people consider important. The type of engagement will vary depending on the nature of the proposed change.

We hope to learn about your values, preferences and needs; to identify issues and possible solutions; and to hear your ideas and alternatives. The Commission’s goals of engagement include an approach more inclusive of Indigenous Peoples and stakeholders whose voices are heard in the implementation of change.

Regulatory Update: Changes

Commission Board Regulation

Emergency Management Regulation (September 1, 2021)

Commission Board Regulation

Requirements for Consultation and Notification Regulation (June 1, 2021)

Commission Board RegulationService Regulation (June 1, 2021)
Commission Board RegulationOil and Gas Processing Facility Regulation (March 4, 2021)

If you have any questions related to this Regulatory Update, please email us at RegulatoryAffairs@bcogc.ca.

Current Engagements

The Commission is seeking input as it develops new provisions under the Dormancy and Shutdown Regulation (DSR). Amendments passed by the B.C. Legislature in October 2021 to the Oil and Gas Activities Act ensure clear authority for these changes.

The proposed changes are intended to accomplish two broad goals: bring more types of infrastructure into the Commission’s framework for restoration, and to ensure the Commission can manage exceptional circumstances when timelines may need to be adjusted.

Including More Types of Infrastructure

The Commission sets timelines and expectations for the restoration of wells and well sites under the DSR. The proposed changes would expand the DSR to include pipelines, facilities, and related activities such as sumps or campsites and the authorized sites they occupy. Including these new elements within the DSR means the Commission can more effectively oversee oil and gas closure and restoration activities. Permit holders will be allotted 15 years from cessation of operations to full restoration. A more specific timeline of the proposed closure activities permit holders must follow is below.

2021 12 08 Pipeline and Facility Timeline Website version

Timelines for Closure

The Commission is the single-window regulator for oil and gas activities in B.C. and this requires a fully equipped toolkit. The proposed addition to regulation would allow the Commission to manage exceptional circumstances to achieve safe, practical, and effective closure such as an unforeseen equipment failure, technical limitations where it takes longer to remediate a site, or practical challenges accessing remote sites. Key Commission officials would be able to adjudicate and grant an exemption from the timelines set out in DSR in accordance with guidelines. The exemption would only impact timelines for shutdown and restoration activities and would not relieve a permit holder from the ultimate requirement to restore a site.

The Commission has committed to making decisions under this provision available publicly. Feedback from this input process will be reviewed to help form Commission guidelines for decision-makers.

We have provided a template for you to enter your comments to the Commission.

Deadline for comments: Jan. 31, 2022

Current Dormancy and Shutdown Regulation
Current Contaminated Sites Regulation

Last modified: December 15, 2021

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