Regulations relating to scientific research for natural resources on the Norwegian continental shelf etc.

Stipulated by Royal Decree of 31 January 1969 pursuant to Act of 21 June 1963 No. 12 relating to scientific research and exploration for and exploitation of subsea natural resources other than petroleum resources section 3. Last amended by Royal Decree of 28 June 1985.

Section 1

These regulations shall apply to scientific rese­arch for natural resources on the seabed or its substrata in Norwegian internal waters, Norwe­gian sea territory, and that part of the continental shelf which is under Norwegian sovereignty, but not in areas subject to private property rights.

Section 2

Natural resources shall mean mineral and other inanimate resources on the seabed and its substrata together with living organisms belonging to the sedentary species, that is to say, organisms which, at the harvestable stage, either are immobile on or under the seabed or are unable to move except in constant physical contact with the seabed or its substrata.

Section 3

The Ministry of Energy (henceforth referred to as the Ministry) may grant licences for scientific research for natural resources on the seabed or in its substrata or in limited areas of same. The licence shall be valid for a specified period of time and shall otherwise be in agreement with this Decree. The Ministry may give additional provisions to ensure the implementation of this Decree and may stipulate supplementary conditions in each separate licence.

Section 4

A scientific research licence may be granted to Norwegian or foreign scientific institutions, sci­entists and others having a need for conducting scientific research.

Section 5

A written application for a scientific research licence must be filed with the Ministry at least 30 days prior to the intended commencement of research activities. If the application is not writ­ten in Norwegian, a translation into Norwegian must be enclosed. Appendices to the application should be presented in Norwegian or English.

The application shall contain the following information:

a) Name, address and nationality of the institution, person etc. on whose behalf the research is to be carried out, together with the name of the person who is to serve as a liaison with the Norwegian authorities,

b) Name, address and nationality of the person or persons, institutions etc. who are to carry out the research,

c)  Information on the nature and objectives of the research, the expected dates of its com­mencement and termination and the areas in which it
will be carried out.

d) A description of the methods of research, including information on ships, aircraft or other floating or airborne vessels, to be used in the research,

e) Whether seismic exploration is contempla­ted, and if so, a description of the methods and the types of explosives to be used with specification of the size of the charges and of depth of detonation. Information shall like­wise be given as to whether the vessels are equipped with radar, echosounder, sonar or other acceptable types of fish-detecting equ­ipment,

f) Indication of the extent to which the rese­arch is to be conducted from Norwegian land territory, with as far as possible, indication of Norwegian ports, airfields or other Nor­wegian areas to be used as bases for the rese­arch.

The Ministry may require additional informa­tion.

Section 6

A scientific research licence is usually granted for one particular investigation. The licence is free of fee unless otherwise is decided in each particular case.

Section 7

Unless otherwise is decided, the licence entitles the licensee to carry out the following operations:

a) Magnetic surveys,

b) Gravimetric surveys,

c) Seismic surveys,

d) Thermal conductivity measurements,

e) Radiometric measurements,

f) Collection of samples from the seabed or its substrata, provided that drilling is not involved.

The Minstry may on application, grant permis­sion to use other exploration methods.

Section 8

Any substantial deviation from the research programme sub­mitted cf. Section 5, litrae c), must not be carried out without obtaining the consent of the Ministry in advance.

Section 9

The Ministry may demand in the licence, that the Ministry, or anyone authorized by it, shall have the right to participate in, or be represen­ted in the research.

Section 10

The scientific research licence does not give any exclusive right to undertake research in the areas covered by the licence. Nor does it give rights or priority to exploit possible natural resources.
The Ministry may at any time grant production licences to others in the areas covered by the granted scientific research licence without incurring liability, to the licencees mentioned in Section 4.

Section 11

The holder of a scientific research licence shall, without delay, at the termination of the rese­arch, submit a report to the Ministry concerning the extent and the execution of the research. The Ministry may stipulate in the licence that reports shall also be submitted while the rese­arch is in progress.

The holder of a scientific research licence shall within a reasonable period of time submit to the Ministry a detailed report on the results of the research.

The Ministry may require additional informa­tion and material to supplement the reports mentioned in paragraphs 1 and 2.

The Ministry may decide that the research results shall be published in a recognised scien­tific publication or in another manner accep­table to the Ministry. A reasonable number of copies of the relevant publication shall be sub­mitted to the Ministry.

Section 12

The scientific research must be carried out in a safe manner and must not interfere, to any unre­asonable degree with other activities. Particular care must be taken to avoid unreasonable impe­diment or nuisance to fishing, shipping or aviation, damage or risk of damage to marine life, damage or risk of damage to natural resources on the seabed or in its substrata, or to underwater cable or other underwater installa­tions, pollution or risk of pollution to the seabed, its substrata, or the sea or the air.

Section 13

The scientific research must be carried out in accordance with-the safety regulations in force at any time. For research which includes drilling, Section 9 of the regulations relating to safety is applicable.

Section 14

The Ministry may under special circumstances grant dispen­sations, wholly or in part, from the provisions laid down in this Decree.

Section 15

This decree enters into force immediately. 




English version is not necessarily updated according to recent changes at any time.

Updated: 08/01/2024

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