Trailing liability for decommissioning of offshore petroleum property guidelines released

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7 March 2022

Expanded remedial direction provisions for offshore petroleum titles came into effect on the 2 March 2022. These provisions are referred to as trailing liability. They expand the government’s powers and enable the following to be called back to undertake remedial work if required: 

  • titleholders and former titleholders 
  • related bodies corporate 
  • related persons of current or former titleholders.

These provisions apply to titles as they existed on or after 1 January 2021. 

The strengthened provisions ensure that the risks and liabilities of petroleum activities remain the responsibility of the petroleum industry. Trailing liability is intended as an option of last resort and is expected to be used rarely. The primary obligation to decommission remains with the current titleholder.

The trailing liability guideline expands on:  

  • who can be subject to a remedial direction 
  • when and how the trailing liability provisions may be applied.  

Read the trailing liability guideline

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