A multinational energy company retained Matrix to provide reclamation services on a large portfolio of inactive oil and gas facilities in the Wainwright, Alberta area. The facilities have passed beyond their productive operating phase and Matrix is developing strategies to support the client with land reclamation and liability reduction by achieving regulatory closure for each site. The portfolio involves activities on 80 to 100 sites/year. Matrix has been assisting on this portfolio since 2010, including site closure activities from Phase 1 environmental site assessments to the submission of reclamation certificate applications.
Matrix’s strong team of reclamation professionals work collaboratively with our client, landowners/occupants, and the regulator to ensure that all sites are returned to equivalent land capability. Each site requires a tailored approach depending on area-specific conditions; for example, one challenge is establishing a native grassland plant community in the sandy soils of the area. Matrix’s reclamation team utilizes their knowledge, experience, and internal standard operating guidelines to evaluate and prepare successful site monitoring programs, complete reclamation detailed site assessments (DSAs), and apply professional judgment when needed to achieve regulatory closure.
Drawing on our experience and technical expertise, Matrix applies professional judgement when required as a pathway to move certain sites to regulatory closure. Listed below are some of the more common areas where justifications have been employed during the DSA stage to achieve closure on these sites:
- Interpreting vegetation health, density, litter content, or species composition based on third party impacts.
- This scenario is common when overgrazing has occurred due to the presence of livestock or site activities completed by the landowner, occupant, or neighboring lease holders.
- Justifying species composition on sites that fall within the cultivated (pasture) and native grassland land use categories
- Explaining deficiencies in soil (admixing, coarse fragments, depth, etc.) based on vegetative health
- Accounting for native grassland sites that do not meet criteria, but are on a successional path for establishing a desirable and stable plant community
- Justifying sites where representative controls are not present and professional judgement is utilized
Our team has developed innovative processes and execution tools that differentiate Matrix from our peer group. Matrix uses iPads for digital data collection in the field and we have developed custom applications that allow data to be easily collected and transmitted. Digital data collection ensures rapid and economical reporting that supports our client in progressing sites towards closure in an efficient manner, with elimination of manual transcription errors.
Matrix has developed cost-effective, practical approaches for each wellsite to maximize efficiency across the entire portfolio. Maintaining an intimate knowledge of the portfolio over the last decade has allowed us to apply resources efficiently to progress each unique site. This includes executing multiple scopes concurrently across the program – resulting in efficiencies and cost savings for our client. Using innovative reclamation assessment methods along with a highly skilled and knowledgeable technical team of environmental professionals, Matrix has submitted more than 150 reclamation certificate applications with a successful approval rate of 98%.
Confidential energy producer
Energy / Oil & Gas
2010 – ongoing