DECC’s Right to Collect Licence Data
DECC has the right to collect Licence Data from licensees but must keep it confidential for a prescribed confidentiality period (normally 4 years for licences awarded in Licence Rounds 1 to 19 inclusive and 3 years for licences awarded in subsequent Licence Rounds). The confidentiality period starts from the date DECC actually receives or when it ‘should have received’ the Licence Data in the normal course of events.
DECC has the right to request Licence Data from any licensee on a licence but where possible will do so via the operating licensee. There is theoretically no limit to the number of times that DECC can request Licence Data from a licensee.
DECC’s Right to Collect Samples
Licensees must send slabbed cores, cuttings and other samples to the BGS (DECC’s agent) soon after a well is completed. These samples are stored at the BGS core store in Keyworth, near Nottingham. There is also a legacy collection of samples at Gilmerton in Edinburgh which is gradually been transferred to Keyworth.
Licensees must retain all samples not submitted to DECC for a minimum of 5 years, after which time they may give DECC 6 months’ notice in writing of their intent to dispose of them.
DECC’s Right to Use and Copy Licence Data
DECC may use Licence Data during the prescribed confidentiality period and may copy it to its agents (including NERC and the BGS) provided it does so under terms of confidentiality.
DECC’s Right to Publish (‘Release’) Licence Data
DECC has a right to publish (‘release’) Licence Data after expiry of the prescribed period of confidentiality unless representations to the contrary are successfully made by licensees.
There is an important distinction between: (a) the DECC’s right to receive (copies) of Licence Data; and (b) DECC’s DTI’s right to publish Licence Data. DECC may request any item deemed to fall within the (very broad and vague) term ‘records’ but may not publish commercially-sensitive elements.
It is the responsibility of individual licensees to make representations to DECC if they do not wish to have their records released. This representation should be made via the operating licensee at least 6 months prior to the scheduled release date. For the purpose of data release, the ‘due delivery date’ to DECC (and start of confidentiality period) is deemed to be the well completion date for well data and the end of the calendar year when data acquisition was completed for seismic data.
Method of Data Release
The channels used by DECC to release licence records include:
Well Report & Log Data is available under licence from three Well Data Release Agents contracted by DECC.
Proprietary Seismic Data is available under licence and for an ‘at-cost’ fee from the applicable Operator (according to the Seismic Data Release Guidelines).
Speculative Seismic Data is available under licence from the applicable Seismic Contractor.
Cores & Samples can be viewed by arrangement with the BGS at either the Keyworth or Gilmerton facility.