This paper reviews the principle environmental aspects associated with North Sea offshore oil and gas development and through the case history of Marathon Oil UK's Brae Field Development illustrates the scope and function of environmental assessments as applied to offshore developments. Details of the approach taken are described including the chronological evolution of the scope and aims of individual assessments. Examples of discharge inventory preparation, effluent and receiving environment monitoring programmes, audits and inspections and procedures are described. The role of these components in the development of environmental management systems is discussed.

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