Off-shore platforms (oil rigs)

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Coming soon

Over the course of the next few months, the content of this site will expand rapidly.

Among the topics we aim to cover, are the governance structures of EU maritime law, inland waterway transport, rules applying to seafarers, trade regulations, security issues, port regulations and competion law.

Triggered by the "Deepwater Horizon" incident in the Gulf of Mexico, the EU's regulator has begun to take an interest in the safety of offshore operations as well as in the liability for incidents arising from offshore operations.

International law


Mobile offshore drilling unit (MODU) is a vessel capable of engaging in drilling operations for the exploration for or exploitation of resources beneath the sea-bed such as liquid or gaseous hydrocarbons, sulphur or salt (SOLAS IX/1, MODU Code 2009 para 1.3.40).

EU ratification

Not applicable

European law


Directive 2013/30/EU on safety of offshore oil and gas operations


Study on civil liability for offshore accidents.

Possible amendment to Environmental Liability Directive 2004/35/EC


Directive 2006/42/EC on machinery

Directive 97/23/EC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States concerning pressure equipment


Directive 89/391/EEC on the introduction of measures to encourage improvements in the safety and health of workers at work

Directive 92/91/EEC concerning the minimum requirements for improving the safety and health protection of workers in the mineral-extracting industries through drilling (eleventh individual Directive within the meaning of Article 16 (1) of Directive 89/391/EEC)


Directive 2004/35/EC on environmental liability with regard to the prevention and remedying of environmental damage

Regulation (EU) No 911/2014 on multiannual funding for the action of the European Maritime Safety Agency in the field of response to marine pollution caused by ships and oil and gas installations

Cases before the European Court of Justice (ECJ)


Offshore Oil and Gas Authorities Group

COMMISSION DECISION of 19 January 2012 on setting up of the European Union Offshore Oil and Gas Authorities Group (2012/C 18/07)

Statements of EU Institutions

Commission Communication “Facing the challenge of the safety of offshore oil and gas activities”. COM(2010) 560 final of 12.10.2010

Written Questions by Members of the European Parliament (rule 130)

Written Question E-011232-13 by MEP Ian Hudghton: “Commission action on the safe transportation of workers in the oil industry” with answer by Commissioner Kallas of 18.11.2013.

Written Question P-006546/2011 by MEP François Alfonsi: “Risks associated with oil drilling in the Mediterranean Sea” with answer by Commissioner Potočnik of 8.8.2011.

Written Question E-000164/2011 by MEP Raül Romeva i Rueda: “Oil spill in off Tarragona” with answer by Commissioner Oettinger of 1.3.2011

Written Question E-9905/2010 by MEP Oreste Rossi: “Alarm on the oyster and shrimp market due to oil spill pollution” with answer by Commissioner Dalli of 7.1.2011.

Written Question E-9471/2010 by MEP Marielle De Sarnez: “Deepwater Horizon oil rig accident” with answer by Commissioner Oettinger of 14.12.2010.

Written Question E-8781/2010 by MEP Franz Obermayr: “BP drilling operations in the Mediterranean” with answer by Commissioner Oettinger fo 7.12.2010.

Written Question E-8532/2010 by MEP Vladko Todorov Panayotov: “Oil” with answer by Commissioner Oettinger of 15.11.2010.

Written Question E-7409/2010 by MEP Charles Tannock: “Safeguarding EU coastal waters in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico” with answer by Commissioner Oettinger of 29.10.2010.

Written Question E-5134/2010 by MEP Licia Ronzulli: “Safety of oil installations in Europe” with answer by Commissioner Oettinger of 19.8.2010-

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