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Canada Oil and Gas Drilling and Production Regulations (C.R.C., c. 1517)

Regulations are current to 2020-11-17

Canada Oil and Gas Drilling and Production Regulations

C.R.C., c. 1517


Regulations Respecting the Drilling and Production of Oil and Gas Belonging to Her Majesty in Right of Canada under all Lands Forming Part of Canada but not Within any Province

Short Title

 These Regulations may be cited as the Canada Oil and Gas Drilling and Production Regulations.


  •  (1) In these Regulations,


    barrel means 35 gallons; (baril)


    blowout means the unintentional and uncontrolled escape of oil or gas, as from a drilling well when high formation pressure is encountered; (éruption)

    blowout preventer

    blowout preventer means a casing-head control fitted with special gates or rams that can be closed around the drill pipe and completely close the top of the casing if the pipe is withdrawn; (dispositif anti-éruption)


    field means

    • (a) the general surface area or areas underlain or appearing to be underlain by one or more pools, or

    • (b) the subsurface regions vertically beneath the surface area or areas; (champ)

    gas-oil ratio

    gas-oil ratio means the number of cubic feet of gas produced per barrel of oil; (rapport gaz-pétrole)

    gas well

    gas well means a well

    • (a) that produces natural gas not associated or blended with oil at the time of production,

    • (b) that produces more than 30,000 cubic feet of natural gas to each barrel of oil from the same producing horizon,

    • (c) wherein the gas producing stratum has been successfully segregated from the oil and the gas is produced separately, or

    • (d) that is classified as a gas well by the Minister for any reason; (puits de gaz)

    oil well

    oil well means any well capable of producing oil and not being a gas well; (puits de pétrole)


    pipeline means any pipe or any system or arrangement of pipes wholly within Canada lands whereby oil or gas is conveyed from any wellhead or other place at which it is produced, to any other place, or from any place where it is stored, processed or treated, to any other place, and includes all property of any kind used for the purpose of, or in connection with, or incidental to, the operation of a pipeline in the gathering, transporting, handling and delivery of oil or gas, and without restricting the generality of the foregoing, includes tanks, surface reservoirs, pumps, racks, storage and loading facilities, compressors, compressor stations, pressure measuring and controlling equipment and fixtures, flow controlling and measuring equipment and fixtures, metering equipment and fixtures, and heating, cooling and dehydrating equipment and fixtures, but does not include any pipe or any system or arrangement of pipes which constitutes a distribution system for the distribution of gas to ultimate consumers; (pipe-line)


    pool means a natural underground reservoir containing or appearing to contain an accumulation of oil or gas or both separated or appearing to be separated from any other such accumulations; (nappe)


    waste includes

    • (a) the inefficient, excessive or improper use or dissipation of reservoir energy,

    • (b) the locating, spacing, drilling, equipping, operating or producing of any well or wells in a manner that results or could result in reducing the quantity of oil or gas ultimately recoverable from any pool,

    • (c) the inefficient storing of oil or gas, whether on the surface or underground,

    • (d) the producing of oil or gas in excess of transportation or marketing facilities or of reasonable market demand, and

    • (e) the locating, drilling, equipping, operating or producing of a well or wells in a manner that causes or could cause unnecessary or excessive surface loss or destruction of oil or gas; (déperdition)


    zone means any stratum or strata designated by the Minister as a zone, either generally or in respect of any designated area, or any specified well or wells. (zone)

  • (2) All other words have the same meaning as in the Canada Oil and Gas Land Regulations.


  •  (1) These Regulations apply to all wells and all operations carried out for the purpose of searching for, producing or transporting oil or gas on Canada lands that are under the control, management and administration of the Minister.

  • (2) These Regulations apply to all operations carried out under the authority of a licence, permit or lease granted or issued pursuant to the Territorial Oil and Gas RegulationsFootnote 1

Notice of Drilling

  •  (1) No person shall drill a well or undertake a program of structure test hole drilling unless he has given notice of his intention to begin such operations to the Oil Conservation Engineer and has obtained the approval of the Oil Conservation Engineer.

  • (2) The notice mentioned in subsection (1) shall be made in triplicate in a form approved by the Department.

  •  (1) Subject to subsection (2), no person shall depart from the program of operations that has been approved by the Oil Conservation Engineer without the further approval of the Oil Conservation Engineer.

  • (2) Where an immediate change in the approved program of operations is necessary, such changes may be made without the approval of the Oil Conservation Engineer, but notice in writing of the change shall be sent to the Oil Conservation Engineer as soon as possible.

Rotary Drilling Procedure

  •  (1) Surface casing satisfactory to the Oil Conservation Engineer shall be used in wells and shall be placed to the depth required by him.

  • (2) Surface casing shall be cemented by the pump and plug or displacement method from the bottom to top and cement shall be allowed to set for not less than 12 hours under pressure before drilling the plug.

  • (3) Production casing or intermediate strings of casing when run shall be of a design to meet safety factors of 1.60 in tension, 1.125 in collapse and 1.0 in burst.

  • (4) The casing design shall be submitted in triplicate to the Oil Conservation Engineer on a form approved by the Chief.

  • (5) Production casing shall be cemented to a height sufficient to ensure isolation of the productive zones.

  • (6) The pump and plug method of cementing shall be used and the cement shall be allowed to set for not less than 24 hours and shall be pressure tested in accordance with good oil field practice before the cement plug is drilled.

Blowout Preventers and Casing Heads

  •  (1) In proven areas, the use of blowout preventers is obligatory and they shall be used in accordance with established good practice.

  • (2) In unproven areas, all drilling wells shall be equipped with minimum blowout-control equipment consisting of

    • (a) equipment that will completely close off the open hole;

    • (b) equipment that will completely close off around the drill pipe, casing and tubing that are being employed in the drilling operations; and

    • (c) a bleed-off line and valve of the proper size and working pressure.

  • (3) Controls for the blowout preventers shall be located at a point not less than two feet outside the substructure.

Cable Drilling Procedure

  •  (1) Before commencing to drill, proper and adequate slush pits shall be constructed for the reception of mud of sufficient quality and quantity so that such mud may be available if and when the hole is plugged, and where cable tools are used, sufficient surface casing shall be set to a depth specified in the notice of intention to drill and cemented from bottom to top and no natural gas that may be encountered in any section of a cable tool drilled hole above the ultimate objective may be permitted to blow while drilling proceeds, but shall be shut off either by mudding or by the running of a string of casing, and, if the latter method is used, such string of casing shall be tested by bailing to insure shut-off before drilling proceeds.

  • (2) The casing program adopted for cable tool drilled wells shall be planned to protect any potential oil or gas bearing horizons penetrated during drilling from infiltration of injurious waters from other horizons and to prevent the migration of oil or gas from one horizon to another.

Coring and Testing

 The licensee, permittee or lessee shall, when a well being drilled is approaching a formation from which production of oil or gas may be expected, if required to do so by the Oil Conservation Engineer, core and adequately test such formation, but such coring and testing must be reasonable and proper and not detrimental to the operations being performed and such test shall not be required unless the hole is in proper condition.

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