The U.S. government will continue to strengthen safety standards for offshore drilling, particularly those covering blowout preventers, two years after the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, writes James Watson, director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. "We have already improved the testing and certification requirements for blowout preventers over the last two years. ... [W]e will be proposing new rules for how blowout preventers are designed, how they must perform and how they must be maintained over their lifespans," Watson writes.

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