The surprise decision is an important win for many Australians, but reform of Australia's offshore petroleum laws is urgently required to protect marine environments.
A school of juvenile bocaccio in the midwaters of Platform Gilda, Santa Barbara Channel, Calif.
Californians love their coast and strongly oppose offshore drilling. Will they support converting old oil rigs to artificial reefs – a policy that benefits both marine life and oil companies?
A recent poll showed seven out of ten South Australian voters are against drilling in the Great Australian Bight.
It would take 17 days to respond to an oil spill in the Great Australian Bight. And that's the best-case scenario.
Deep sea corals off Florida.
A massive new discovery this summer of miles of corals in deep waters off South Carolina shows how much we have yet to learn about life on the ocean floor.
A drilling site next to farms and homes in Weld County, Colo.
Stephanie Malin/Flight provided by LightHawk
Many Coloradans feel powerless to protect themselves from pollution and other fallout caused by the state's fracking boom.
Automation could help us avoid future disasters.
US Coast Guard
Developments in technology mean that we can use automation to reduce accidents on oil rigs.
Boat noise can interfere with the underwater communication of fishes and other marine animals.
The noise from motor boats, sonar and other industrial activity interferes with the underwater chatter of fishes.
The Hebron is seen here being towed to open water in 2017.
The massive Hebron oil platform off the coast of Newfoundland is an engineering marvel. Here's how it was constructed.
Sunset on the beach, Santa Barbara, California.
Fifty years after a major oil spill in Santa Barbara helped launch the environmental movement, Californians strongly oppose the Trump administration's push to expand offshore drilling.
Skimming oil in the Gulf of Mexico during the Deepwater Horizon spill, May 29, 2010.
A scientist who served on a national commission to review the 2010 BP oil spill explains why Trump administration efforts to loosen offshore drilling regulation pose major risks for minor payoffs.
Big Sur coastline.
Ashley Spratt, USFWS
For 50 years California has used laws and policies to manage development along its 1,100-mile coastline and preserve public access to the shore. Climate change will make that task harder.
Migrating humpback whales avoid loud, nearby sounds.
Humpback whales are deterred from their migration routes by the noise of air guns used to survey the ocean floor for oil and gas deposits, a new study has found.
By 2030, the Blue Economy will be worth $3 trillion. And the UK is well placed to capture a slice of this lucrative market, if it meets the challenges involved with innovation and ambition.
Shell’s drilling rig destined for waters off Alaska met with problems in the Arctic and protesters in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson
The industry has wanted access to offshore oil for decades, but the Arctic remains challenging. Consumers, meanwhile, seem conflicted on expanded offshore drilling.
Trans-Alaska Pipeline, northern Brooks Range, Alaska.
Oil production used to fall when prices were low. But a new drilling boom in Alaska, driven by technical advances and global partnerships, spotlights America's rise as a world oil power.
Activists in Seattle practice for demonstrations against Royal Dutch Shell’s plans to drill in the Arctic, April 17, 2015.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson
President Obama used an obscure 1953 law to bar offshore drilling in Arctic Alaska and along the Atlantic coast. Republicans and energy companies want to reverse the ban, but it will not be easy.
U.S. Coast Guard vessels battle the fire on the Deepwater Horizon while searching for survivors from the rig’s 126-person crew.
U.S. Coast Guard/Wikipedia
The new movie 'Deepwater Horizon' depicts the blowout that triggered the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. A professor of petroleum engineering assesses what the film gets right and wrong.
It took BP 87 days to cap the Gulf of Mexico spill.
BP's plans for the Bight say it would take 10 days to begin dispersing an oil spill at source, and 35 days for well-capping equipment to reach the site – making it likely that oil would hit the coast.
The 2010 Gulf of Mexico blowout prompted a technical review, but what about corporate soulsearching?
EPA/US Coast Guard
As BP plans to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight, questions can be asked about whether it has made the right changes to its working practices to avoid a repeat of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico disaster.
Sperm whales, like many other species, use echolocation which can be hampered by noise.
Gabriel Barathieu/Wikimedia Commons
We tend to think of the oceans as quiet, when in fact they're anything but. Noise is the "forgotten pollutant", but the good news is that unlike many other pollutants it can be switched off if we try.