As Low As Reasonably Practicable

Implementation of risk-reducing measures until the cost (including time, capital costs or other resources/assets) of further risk reduction is disproportional to the potential risk reducing effect achieved by implementing any additional measure.

Note 1 to entry: See UK HSE.

Source: ISO 16530-1:2017, Petroleum and natural gas industries – Well integrity – Part 1: Life cycle governance, First Edition, March 2017. Global Standards

ALARP (As Low As Reasonably Practicable)

A process for assessing the amount of effort and resources that should reasonably be applied to reduce risk.  Reducing a risk to a level which is ALARP involves objectively determining the balance where the effort and cost of further reduction measures become disproportionate to the additional amount of risk reduction obtained.

Source: International Association of Drilling Contractors, Appendix 2 to Health, Safety and Environment Case Guidelines for Offshore Drilling Contractors, Issue 3.3.2, February 2010. IADC Guidelines


As low as reasonably practicable (ALARP)

A phrase used in the Regulations and the Act. The concept has been elaborated in various legal judgements. (There is voluminous relevant guidance available from Australia and elsewhere, e.g. the UK HSE.) (The related phrase “reasonably practicable” is used frequently in the Act.)The legal definition of “reasonably practicable” was set out in England by Lord Justice Asquith in Edwards v National Coal Board [1949] who said:

“‘Reasonably practicable’ is a narrower term than ‘physically possible’ and seems to me to imply that a computation must be made by the owner, in which the quantum of risk is placed on one scale and the sacrifice involved in the measures necessary for averting the risk (whether in money, time or trouble) is placed in the other; and that if it be shown that there is a gross disproportion between them — the risk being insignificant in relation to the sacrifice — the defendants discharge the onus on them. Moreover, this computation falls to be made by the owner at a point of time anterior to the accident.” This English decision has since been confirmed by the Australian High Court

Source: NOPSEMA Guideline – Glossary – Regulatory Operations, N-09000-GL0326, Australia, Revision 5, December 2011. Regulatory Guidance


As low as reasonably practicable (ALARP)

To reduce a risk to a level which is ‘as low as reasonably practicable’ involves balancing reduction in risk against the time, trouble, difficulty and cost of achieving it. This level represents the point, objectively assessed, at which the time, trouble, difficulty and cost of further reduction measures become unreasonably disproportionate to the additional risk reduction obtained.

Source: OGP Report No. 6.36/210, Guidelines for the Development and Application of Health, Safety and Environmental Management Systems, International Association of Oil & Gas Producers, July 1994. Global Standards

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