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How do you ingrain a culture of responsible environmental performance? First rolled out in June 2005, EMFORCE is an in-house course that equips employees and contractor leaders with skills, knowledge and tools to lead the workforce in environmentally responsible day-to-day operations and project planning. To date, this two day course has been delivered to twenty classes totaling 350 workers. Typical class attendees include Steam Engineers, Operations Technical Facilities Managers, Plant Foremen, Field Foremen, Maintenance Planning Leaders, Operations Superintendents, Plant and Field

Operations Specialists, Project Engineers and Advisors for whom it is required training. EMFORCE provides a foundation of knowledge from which to begin, and positions environmental responsibility as a core value. What it means for each individual to further the corporate goal of “Protect Tomorrow. Today.” is explored, and the expectation that all workers can and must be Environment Leaders is woven throughout. The course culminates with a call to leadership, and the public sharing of each participant’s Personal Action Plan with senior management.



The Horn River Basin is a shale gas play located 40 kilometres north of Fort Nelson, BC, and falls within the traditional land of the Fort Nelson First Nation and Acho Dene Koe (Fort Liard) First Nation. Ten companies within the basin – Apache Canada Ltd., Devon Canada Corporation, EnCana Corporation, EOG Resources Canada, Imperial Oil Limited/ExxonMobil Canada Limited, Nexen Inc., Quicksilver Resources Canada Inc., Stone Mountain Ltd, ConocoPhillips and Pengrowth - quickly recognized an opportunity to work together to minimize environmental impacts, and; maximize benefits to the region. Thus The Horn River Producers group was formed.

Working with local stakeholders, First Nations, and government, the Producers Group led/ participated in a number of initiatives to address the concerns identified. These include the development of Area Operating Protocols, a moose survey for the basin, the development of a Wildlife Sighting Program, worked with government to build a Data Library a Ministry of Energy led basin wide surface water inventory study, the development of an Annual Activity Map and associated Infrastructure Management Process, and participation in the Geoscience BC Saline Aquifer Study. The Producers Group is proud of its accomplishments to date and will continue to collaborate on community initiatives as the development progresses.



Faced with tremendous rain in Manitoba during 2010, Penn West got inventive: developing a low cost, sustainable solution for stabilizing lease construction sites using flax straw produced by local farmers. The area’s flat land and high water table rendered conventional lease construction techniques ineffective. Experimenting with an old prairie road building technique, the solution entailed spreading locally sourced flax straw across the saturated subsoil for stabilization followed by layers of dry

clay and crushed gravel. This solution supported operating schedules while maintaining safety and environmental stewardship. This sustainable solution has several benefits compared to alternatives: a new revenue source for local farmers, lower material and transportation costs, no invasive plant materials are introduced and waste is reduced through reuse of the flax straw and clay mix.

ConocoPhillips Canada supported the development of a phytoremediation system that is effective at degrading petroleum hydrocarbons (PHCs), particularly in remote areas with limited access to equipment and landfills. It conserves and reuses soils and employs biological systems (microorganisms and plants) to reduce PHCs and restore equivalent land capability. By treating impacted soils on-site, we eliminate soil management practices such as excavating, trucking

and off-site disposal, which are carbon intensive and transfer untreated material to storage (e.g. landfills.) Using phytoremediation, remediation and reclamation occur simultaneously. This allows us to return leased land to landowners (private and public) more quickly and protect groundwater quality at remote sites better. In summary, phytoremediation is a sound, sciencebased, cost-effective approach to achieving site closure in a sustainable manner.





As a result of a very successful drilling program in its Pouce Coupe South field in north-western Alberta, Birchcliff Energy Ltd. embarked on the approval and construction of a sour gas plant capable of processing 60 MMcfd. In a climate of heightened public awareness and sensitivity to construction of any new sour gas processing facility, Birchcliff recognized the need to put its environmental stewardship commitment first. By designing our plant to the highest safety and technical standards and by using the most modern materials and technology available, we significantly

reduced emissions which demonstrates our environmental stewardship commitment. Our goals were to; • Complete the gas plant safely, on time and on budget • Establish an open, cooperative and honest relationship with each of our stakeholders • Minimize all environmental impacts We achieved each of these goals through a well managed and coordinated team effort.

ConocoPhillips Canada researched regulatory process challenges in northern Canada, compared them to similar concerns internationally and investigated best practices and potential solutions that could bridge the challenges and work in the Canadian Beaufort. From this a comprehensive “white paper” approach to broad regional environmental assessment was written and distributed to external stakeholders for discussion – including Inuvialuit, Federal and Territorial departments and CAPP member companies. Continual dialogue first with the Inuvialuit to get buy-in on the approach, then the federal government

departments and industry resulted in a multistakeholder version of our idea being developed and supported by all the stakeholders and funded by Government ($23M) in 2010. This multi-stakeholder effort (called the Beaufort Regional Environmental Assessment) is being lead by the federal government and Inuvialuit; and includes CAPP, Yukon and NWT Territorial representation and will both improve the environmental information and regulatory clarity for future environmental assessments for the offshore.





Canadian Natural constructed and drilled a multiwell pad on environmentally sensitive Crown land designated under the Wildlife Habitat Protection Act. The project is located near the community of Senlac in west central Saskatchewan and included constructing a 1.5 km all weather access road and 12 well drilling pad on 5.9 ha lease located on

hummocky and hilly terrain that supports a matrix of native grassland and woody cover in the N ½ of 10-40-26 W3M. Associated with the project was the installation of three pipelines in a common trench that will tie-in the multi-well pad in 16-10-40-26 W3M to an existing facility in NE Ÿ of 11-40-26 W3M.

In 2007, Devon undertook a voluntary, proactive and collaborative initiative to inventory and categorize the company’s stream crossings in the Southern Rockies. The area is home to sensitive aquatic habitats and the headwaters of many important rivers. Devon reached out to government and other stakeholders to create a unique matrix to evaluate crossings and prioritize required enhancements. Crossings with the greatest impact on aquatic habitat and the potential to interrupt Devon operations were addressed first. Enhancements to

high priority crossings were completed in 2009, with work on others scheduled through 2012. An ongoing observation and maintenance phase has also been initiated. By taking stock of all stream crossings, from phone lines to pipelines, Devon proactively managed its impact on the environment and reduced operational risk. The collaborative approach built strong relationships and ensured that all interested parties could contribute to the health of their local watersheds.





In August 2010, ConocoPhillips’ Surmont Phase 2 site staff acted quickly to respond to an environmental risk. Though the site was prepared for an ordinary amount of rain water, no one could have predicted the torrential downpour that occurred late that month. If it hadn’t been contained quickly, sediment runoff from site may have proven lethal for the trout in nearby Engstrom Lake. Thanks to quick thinking by Surmont Phase 2 field staff, however, flax bails, silt

fences and drainage ditches were put in place quickly to prevent any environmental damage. What’s most significant about this event, beyond the prevention of an incident, is that runoff control is not a mandated performance indicator for Surmont Phase 2. The field staff involved did not take action because it would look good in their monthly report. They did it because it was the right thing to do.



The TROTM process is a new approach Suncor developed for managing tailings at its oil sands mining operations near Fort McMurray, Alberta. Suncor plans to invest $1.2 billion to implement the TROTM process, which the company expects will reduce tailings reclamation time by up to two decades as compared to its current methods. Suncor has received regulatory approval to use the new approach commercially. TROTM process infrastructure is now in place and operational, putting

the company on track to meet or exceed fluid tailings reduction performance targets set by the regulator. TROTM technology development, regulatory approval and commercial implementation have already enabled Suncor to cancel plans for five additional tailings ponds at its existing mine operations. In the years ahead, the company expects to reduce the number of tailings ponds at its present mine site from eight to just one, shrinking the total land area covered by the ponds by approximately 80%. TM

Trademark of Suncor Energy Inc



Suncor marked an industry milestone September 2010, becoming the first and only oil sands company to complete surface reclamation of a tailings pond, a key step in returning the site back to nature. The 220-hectare site, formerly known as Pond 1, is located north of Fort McMurray. Suncor renamed the area Wapisiw Lookout to pay tribute to the history of the region, and to honour its Aboriginal peoples. In time, the company expects Wapisiw Lookout will become a productive forest and wetland. Over the

next two decades, Suncor will maintain and monitor site progress to ensure it’s on course for return to a self-sustaining ecosystem. Suncor is using the expertise gained at Wapisiw Lookout, along with new and developing innovations for managing tailings, to speed up reclamation of existing tailings ponds. The achievement also provides knowledge and a living example industry can build on going forward.

Apache and Encana formed a 50/50 partnership to jointly develop a portion of the Horn River Basin shale gas play. With increasing stakeholder discussions about water use in shale gas development, the companies examined alternatives to freshwater use to supply hydraulic fracturing operations. What followed was the identification of the Debolt formation, a deep, sub-surface, nonpotable aquifer holding saline, sour water. Tapping this water source required many innovations, including the investigation of several sweetening

methods needed to make this water usable. The partners went on to design and build the Debolt water treatment plant, and to develop the Debolt formation as a water storage reservoir, the first of its kind in Canada. Operational since June 2010 and in line wit the companies’ good-neighbour and sustainable development practices, the plant has significantly reduced surface water use and is expected to fulfill a minimum of 80% of Apache and Encana’s water supply needs for hydraulic fracturing operations.





As the biggest in situ oil sands project in Canada, with a lease covering 780 square kilometers, Cold Lake Operations is steward to an expansive area containing wildlife habitat. A number of wildlife monitoring programs have been in place for decades, and we remain committed to their continuous improvement. By doing so, and engaging others too, we believe we can move beyond regulatory compliance towards enhancing ecological value. After years of collaboration, we’ve entered into a formal long-term partnership with Ducks Unlimited Canada to complete a wetland inventory of the area,

and collaborate in the development of construction and operations best management practices. A Wildlife Team has been formed with volunteers from each plant and field unit that act as ambassadors championing programs, soliciting new ideas, and renewing enthusiasm for long-standing monitoring by helping educate others as to its purpose and value. Cold Lake’s Wildlife at Work program was certified by the Wildlife Habitat Council in November 2010, the first ever upstream oil and gas site to be so recognized in Canada.

ConocoPhillips Canada developed a new platform for reporting our environmental and social performance and more effectively engaging our stakeholders. The Sustainable Development Portal is a progressive and compelling website which sets a new standard for sustainable development reporting within our industry. Innovative and intuitive features include interactive cross sections of our operations and an animation of the water process at our oil sands operations. The Flash-based technology also supports numerous videos profiling our environmental and social programs as explained by employees.

The Portal contains more information than typically found in sustainable development reports, including 400 metrics and the equivalent of 130 pages of text. New key metrics include the amount of non-saline water used for steam generation (freshwater) and for oil sands drilling, completions and abandonment. The Portal will both inform our stakeholders and support increased dialogue. It also enables our employees to act as ambassadors for our company and the Canadian oil and gas industry. Check out our Sustainable Development Portal at





Corporate responsibility at Cenovus means improved health and safety for our staff and for the communities where we live and operate, advancing environmental stewardship, good governance and transparency through reporting, engaging with stakeholders and open and honest disclosure. In 2010, we revised our Corporate Responsibility Policy to align with our culture, drive our commitments, strategy and reporting, and maintain alignment with our business objectives and processes.

Cenovus engaged employees and other key stakeholders (e.g., ethical investors, NGOs, etc.) to capture and integrate their feedback, experiences and ideas into the new CR policy. In order to collect and incorporate all stakeholder feedback, the revision process consisted of a diverse mix of activities including a gap analysis, staff survey, facilitated workshops with leaders and external reviews. The process shaped our six new corporate responsibility commitment areas: Leadership, Corporate Governance and Business Practices, People, Environmental Performance, Stakeholder and Aboriginal Engagement, and Community Involvement and Investment.



Canadian Natural has created the first compensation lake in the oil sands region, designed as a self-sustaining ecosystem that provides value to stakeholders. Horizon Lake is a vibrant water body used by fish, birds and other wildlife on an ongoing basis and was created in close consultation with local people, incorporating their ideas into development plans. Aboriginal stakeholders provided significant

traditional knowledge including key advice on fish assemblage, suitable locations for the planting of medicinal plants and wildlife usage in the area. The lake supports 10 species of fish, 13 species of aquatic plants and is frequented by numerous waterfowl species. The areas around the lake provide excellent habitat for black bear, moose, white tail deer, wolf, fox and coyote.



Devon places great value on its people and invests in many programs, initiatives and benefits in order to recruit, retain and continually engage employees. Over the past few years, most employers have come to view staff recruitment and retention as a growing challenge. However, this issue has been most acutely felt by the non-profit sector as organizations typically lack the resources to implement retention programs and as a result, face high-levels of turn-over. In response to the need, Devon launched a unique grant – Investing in People – focused on building

capacity in the non-profit sector by offering organizations the means to strengthen themselves from within so they can offer the best possible services and programming in their communities. To date, Devon has awarded 24 grants totaling $100,000. Organizations are using the funds to build and implement strategic plans, educate their workforce and reward and recognizing their volunteers.

The Competency Management and Development System is designed to provide a comprehensive competency-based approach to ensure workers understand their specific job requirements and provide a credible record of achieved skills. The system is competency-based, on-line, skill profile oriented that is third party audited to meet the requirements of due diligence. The CMDS system provides occupational profiles, prior learning assessment and tracking and a competency development system. It also includes post-secondary certification, recruitment, retention

and succession planning and a competency management system. Industry workers developed the competencies to reflect the work they do within their facility. Because it is experienced workers who develop the competencies, it ensures they are relevant and acceptable to the workplace. Evaluation of employee competency is based on self assessment, prior learning assessment and a validation of work by subject matter experts. Identified training needs are met by e-learning or instructor-lead sessions.





The Local Opportunity Center (LOC), founded by Statoil Canada (SCL) in fall 2009 is a unique, collaborative approach between industry, communities affected by oil sands development and the government. This multi-party collaborative effort has been essential to successfully build local business and entrepreneurial capacity as a basis for developing sustainable communities. This employment and business resource centre helps develop a skilled and safe workforce for our project

and for local businesses. It provides local vendors with access to training and business development tools and ensures that contractors have access to information about current and future business opportunities with SCL and other companies. Statoil’s commitment is to provide willing local businesses the opportunity to work for us in our operations. The availability of a skilled and safe workforce and suppliers is important to help achieve this goal. It also contributes to the long term development of Alberta’s oil sands resource for the benefit of all Albertans.



Nametow-askiy Inu-wok, or People of the Land, is the title of four short videos produced by Laricina Energy Ltd. (Laricina) in cooperation with the Bigstone Cree Nation (BCN). Funded by Laricina, the videos tell the story of BCN’s traditional territory and why it’s important to the culture, history and values of the BCN people. Hailed as a success by community leaders, People of the Land is an innovative approach to stakeholder

communication bringing together the knowledge and experience of BCN elders and the commitment of the Laricina Community Engagement Team to meet the information and cultural needs of the community. Laricina is proud of its involvement with People of the Land – a product of responsive, respectful social performance.



In late 2008, Enerplus set out to significantly improve regulatory compliance across the company using a novel approach and tools to empower employees. This work was premised on two key questions. Firstly, were employees aware of all the regulatory requirements in their operating area? Secondly, was the company compliant with all of those requirements? To answer these questions, Enerplus initiated the Proactive Regulatory Compliance Project. The team was charged with assembling the resources, systems and tools that would ensure that Enerplus would be able answer those questions in the affirmative in the future. Over the course of two years,

Enerplus successfully developed a culture where the status of our regulatory compliance is measured alongside production and operating costs. In addition, we developed innovative processes and tools to ensure that each of the functional groups within Enerplus could easily access their own regulatory requirements and the internal procedures that would ensure compliance. Enerplus has seen many benefits from this project including improved selfdisclosures, internal inspections and audits, proactive conversations with regulators, internal training and education sessions and improved internal awareness and communication on regulatory compliance.

The Shell Conservation Internship Program (SCIP) is a partnership initiative between the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) and Shell Canada Limited. The NCC is a private, non-profit organization working for the direct protection of Canada’s biodiversity through the purchase, donation or placing of conservation easements on ecologically significant lands. NCC’s conservation and planning work is driven by the best available conservation science. SCIP provides university, undergrad, graduate and post graduate students with hands-on field

experience to further their conservation career objectives, and provides NCC with the capacity necessary to tackle its priority conservation goals. Shell provides the funding for the 16-week employment positions, where the interns work on some of the most ecologically significant landscapes across Canada. They also help NCC with vital fieldwork, including species inventories, monitoring and invasive alien species removal. With the experience gained by the interns, Shell and NCC are training the next generation of environmental stewards.





Driver distraction is responsible for 80% of collisions, the majority of which are attributed to using cellular phones. Youth are a high risk category because of their proclivity for texting, which prompted University of Alberta medical students to create Students for Cellphone-free Driving (SCFD.) ConocoPhillips Canada (CPC) was approached to help develop and deploy an awareness program for high school students. We were integral in creating the cutting edge, hardhitting curriculum and social marketing campaign,

which also aligns with our cellphone-free driving policy. The team, which included participants from the public and private sector, worked with SCFD to make the program a resounding success. 83% of students surveyed following the presentation do not think they will use their cellphones while driving, and 91% would warn a driver using a cellphone of the dangers. By the end of the 10/11 school year over 4,500 students will have participated.

In 2010, Penn West increased ERCB facilities compliance ratings to exceed industry averages by up to 19% in the seven facility-type categories by implementing its Tier 1 Facilities Inspections Program. Faced with non-compliances levied by the ERCB in 2008, a robust, ongoing internal inspections program was designed to include: education and training; tools for the field; collaboration with the ERCB; 10 Full-Time Field Regulatory Compliance Staff; and a Facility Inspection Framework covering regulations in Alberta,

British Columbia, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. With 18,000 inspections in 2009 and more in 2010, compliance deficiencies were identified and selfdisclosed to the ERCB where required. Action was taken to remedy deficiencies and notification given to the ERCB upon completion. Penn West’s overall ERCB compliance rating increased from 83% in 2008 to 91% in 2010 while industry’s average remained constant at 80% from 2009 through to Q3 2010.





From May through August 2010, Chevron Canada successfully executed deepwater drilling operations in the Orphan Basin off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador. This performance on the Lona O-55 exploration well is noteworthy in several regards. First, and most importantly, the primary goal of ensuring safe operations was achieved – there were no-lost time incidents while drilling this well. Second, Chevron’s capability to safely drill in a deepwater, harsh environment was demonstrated – situated

430 kilometres northeast of St. John’s, NL in a water depth of 2,600 metres, the Lona O-55 well set a new record as the deepest water depth an offshore well had been drilled in Canadian history. Third, this drilling program was executed immediately following the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico – and was done so amid significantly increased regulatory oversight and heightened public and media scrutiny.



Earlier this year, Shell recognized that the Athabasca Oil Sands Project’s (AOSP) Expansion 1 project passed the historic milestone of 43 million hours without a Lost Time Incident (LTI) across their operations. This occasion marked the first time in the history of the Royal Dutch Shell Group that any project has realized this milestone. The AOSP Expansion 1 encompassed both an upstream oil sands mine expansion and an upgrader expansion project. At its peak, it had a construction workforce of more than 15,000 people. The mine

expansion, Jackpine Mine, is located adjacent to the existing heavily oil operations at the Muskeg River Mine, north of Fort McMurray. The upgrader expansion project was a 100,000-barrel per day (b/d) expansion of the existing Scotford Upgrader, located near Fort Saskatchewan. This accomplishment was significant in that it was achieved by a tremendous focus on leadership visibility, organizational efficiency and effective communication.



The crushing reality is that in Alberta, there will be on average 100 hand crush injuries reported to the Workers Compensation Board every day. A similar startling statistic is that every month, approximately 100 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in Alberta. Through collaboration with contractor Silverstar Well Servicing, Suncor Energy In Situ

Drilling & Completions decided to address both of these issues with an innovative job observation program titled the ‘Pink Pinch Point Project’ or 4Pinc for short. This HSE program is simple to implement on any worksite and only requires a sharp eye, some willing hands and a rig crew who is tough enough to wear pink!



In early 2010, ARC introduced the use of a Safety Perception Survey (SPS) as a means to proactively measure the safety climate within the organization. The SPS engaged employees and contract supervisors in delivering anonymous feedback on ARC’s Health and Safety Management System. By moving beyond basic health and safety performance measurements ARC gained tangible direction as to how measureable and continuous improvements to the Health and Safety Management System can be achieved.

Fundamental to success of the SPS was positioning the people most affected by the Health and Safety Management System as drivers in how the system is managed. The collaborative and cooperative approach of the SPS has empowered employees and ultimately increased individual ownership and accountability in the safety performance of day-today operations. Constructive long-term partnerships between management and field staff have been developed, resulting in improved communications and capacity building at all levels of ARC.



Syncrude commissioned the Field Awareness Safety Team (FAST) in January 2010 to observe both safe and unsafe behaviours on its sites. In addition to observing safe and unsafe actions of contractors and employees, the team of safety specialists also would interact with workers and leaders to help ensure Syncrude employees and contractors work safe. The information from these observations and interactions is collected and published in a weekly report called the Safe Acts Index to document sitewide trends of both prudent and dangerous acts they witnessed during tours. By cataloguing their observations, the team identifies trends to highlight in targeted campaigns for leaders, employees and employees to watch for, such as seat-belt use or peer-to-peer interventions.

The goal of the behaviour-based observation and intervention program is to prevent incidents rather than punish workers by highlighting unsafe actions before they lead to an injury. The success of FAST has led to other behaviourbased observation and intervention programs targeted to specific departments, such as the Stand Up For Safety initiative in its Mobile Mine Maintenance group. As a result, Syncrude has seen record-setting safety performance through 2010, with a total recordable injury frequency rate of 0.41 and a loss-time injury frequency rate of 0.04 through November 15, matching the organization’s best-ever performance in these key benchmarks.



ConocoPhillips Canada’s Surmont Oil Sands Project grew significantly in 2010 and construction of a second phase is underway. To help reduce the injury rate for our Surmont Operations, an “identity” was developed for our Health, Safety and Environment Management System (HSEMS.) Based on the Manitoba Workplace Safety and Health Division and Workers Compensation Board of Manitoba’s WorkSAFE model, Spot the Hazard, Assess the Risk, Find a Safer Way, Everyday, connected easily to all components of our HSEMS. This enabled all

personnel to apply elements of our management system to reduce the risk of their activities. We used the WorkSAFE brand as part of our HSE communications during safety meetings, HSE bulletins, posters, training modules and general HSE communication. This program contributed to a 43 percent drop in Surmont Operations’ total recordable rate in 2010 (to 0.4 from 0.7.)

Extra information

Back cover

2011 Responsible Canadian Energy™ Performance Awards  
2011 Responsible Canadian Energy™ Performance Awards  

Nominees for 2011 Responsible Canadian Energy Awards.