There is a general belief that the oil industry has its activities incompatible with the concept of sustainable development. However, the development of humanity has been based on power consumption; much of them are provided by this industry. With the new exploratory oil & gas (O&G) frontier in Brazil, the pre-salt, it is possible to envision that the operating segment will be very present in the country, as well as their negative impacts to the environment and its tons of waste that will be generated. This paper seeks to promote reflection on the theme discussing the concept of life-cycle thinking (LCT). The application of life-cycle thinking to waste management brings a differential for long-term reduction of pollution, by facilitating the analysis of various aspects including the necessary infrastructure for managing legal matters (i.e., licensing) and logistics. LCT still promotes a better understanding for the general public, regulators, operators and companies providing services. It even allows companies in Brazil to be better prepared for the challenges related to the pollution generated by O&G offshore exploration wastes.