The National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA) was established on 1 January 2012, and is Australia's first national regulator for health and safety, well integrity and environmental management for offshore oil and gas operations.
NOPSEMA has superseded NOPSA, the National Offshore Petroleum Safety Authority, which was established in Australia in 2005 with a remit to regulate the health and safety of workers on offshore facilities in Commonwealth waters, and in waters where State powers had been conferred.
Following strong recommendations arising from the Final Government Response to the Report of the Montara Commission of Inquiry (2011) and the Productivity Commission Report (2009), the presiding Commonwealth Minister for Resources, Energy and Tourism at that time, Martin Ferguson, endorsed the establishment of NOPSEMA as the single, unified national regulator to enforce compliance with offshore safety, well integrity and environmental management across the industry.
The responsibility to investigate and report on offshore environmental management practices and make recommendations had previously rested with the State and Territory Designated Authorities, however the passing of the Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Amendment (National Regulator) Bill 2011 transferred this duty to NOPSEMA from 1 January 2012.
NOPSEMA effectively consolidates current State, Territory and National regulation for health and safety, structural integrity, environmental plans and day-to-day operations associated with petroleum activities in Commonwealth waters.