Reclaimit Environmental Consultancy
In early 2013, the Reclaimit environmental consultancy was introduced to a storage room full of banker boxes containing unsorted correspondence, reports, and files. On behalf of a Canada-based oil and gas firm, Reclaimit consultants were asked to organize the records and develop a strategy to assess the baseline environmental status of a newly acquired oil sands asset located in northwest Saskatchewan.
The asset is particularly remote. It is a three-hour drive on a gravel and sand road from the nearest settlement and an eight-hour drive or 45-minute helicopter flight to the closest fully-equipped medical facility. The previous owner developed the asset from 2005-10, with a development footprint scattered across a region approximating 730 km2 of boreal forest.
Upon completion of record organization, Reclaimit forestland environmental consultants commenced the assessment and reporting of the asset’s condition. To make this happen, our team developed an assessment procedure, engaged the support of additional professional field crew, and spent the next two field seasons evaluating each impacted feature within the development. From 2013-14, a total of 400 small exploration leases, 400+ km of access roads and numerous other unknown and unclassified features across the asset were visited, assessed, and reported to the client.
In step with the assessment work, the Reclaimit consultancy was tasked to represent the client for regulatory and stakeholder interactions and to mitigate newly-identified high priority problem sites (e.g. erosion near water sources). Between 2014-18 our consultants completed numerous projects to address substandard conditions and improve the environmental status of targeted sites. The work also created multiple opportunities for local employment.
As the baseline liability was defined and risk assessed and environmental mitigation occurred, the question of environmental criteria was raised. Why? Because no regulatory standard was in place to assess the final reclamation status of developed locations in the operating region. As a result of built trust and environmental mitigation successes, the government regulator and the client invited Reclaimit consultants to draft an Asset-Specific Reclamation Criteria as a tool to evaluate site condition. The criteria recommendations, once successfully negotiated and tested for the regulator and the client, were fully implemented in 2018 and resulted in the release of 118 liabilities.
In the 2019 season work activities were significantly reduced on the asset due to extreme volatility in global commodity prices and associated impacts on the client’s operations. Notwithstanding reduction in the program size, Reclaimit consultants completed the final evaluation of another 45 sites, now ready for regulatory submission and liability release in 2020.
Reclaimit forestland reclamation consultants strive for professionalism, collaboration, and transparency in all initiatives. These qualities, combined with innovation and trust, provide industry-leading results for project proponents, government, regional stakeholders. The big winner in this recipe is the land’s ability to continue to supply ecosystem goods and services for society and the flora and fauna that depend upon it.