Upon September 18, 1978, the Secretary and the Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall, in consultation with each other and, as appropriate, with the heads of other Federal departments and agencies, promptly commence a joint study of the adequacy of existing safety and health regulations and of the technology, equipment, and techniques available for the exploration, development, and production of the minerals of the outer Continental Shelf. The results of such study shall be submitted to the President who shall submit a plan to the Congress of his proposals to promote safety and health in the exploration, development, and production of the minerals of the outer Continental Shelf.
In exercising their respective responsibilities for the artificial islands, installations, and other devices referred to in section 1333(a)(1) of this title, the Secretary, and the Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating, shall require, on all new drilling and production operations and, wherever practicable, on existing operations, the use of the best available and safest technologies which the Secretary determines to be economically feasible, wherever failure of equipment would have a significant effect on safety, health, or the environment, except where the Secretary determines that the incremental benefits are clearly insufficient to justify the incremental costs of utilizing such technologies.
The Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating shall promulgate regulations or standards applying to unregulated hazardous working conditions related to activities on the outer Continental Shelf when he determines such regulations or standards are necessary. The Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating may from time to time modify any regulations, interim or final, dealing with hazardous working conditions on the outer Continental Shelf.
Nothing in this subchapter shall affect the authority provided by law to the Secretary of Labor for the protection of occupational safety and health, the authority provided by law to the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency for the protection of the environment, or the authority provided by law to the Secretary of Transportation with respect to pipeline safety.
The Secretary of Commerce, in cooperation with the Secretary of the Department in which the Coast Guard is operating, and the Director of the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, shall conduct studies of underwater diving techniques and equipment suitable for protection of human safety and improvement of diver performance. Such studies shall include, but need not be limited to, decompression and excursion table development and improvement and all aspects of diver physiological restraints and protective gear for exposure to hostile environments.