Canadian Natural develops every project with a vision and plan to ensure the landscape is returned to a healthy ecosystem once our activities are complete. We manage and minimize the environmental impact of our projects on the land, progressively reclaim our footprint and work with stakeholders to ensure their present and future needs are met.
Our environmental planning prioritizes our work so we can take action well ahead of regulatory timelines. This approach has proven to be an effective way of managing our activities that include abandonment and reclamation of inactive wells, decommissioning of inactive facilities, and the remediation of sites at operating facilities.
Managing our Footprint
Canadian Natural works to minimize its footprint through effective planning, design and use of technology. In our North America Exploration and Production operations we are managing our footprint by implementing minimal disturbance drilling techniques. Our practices include reducing the overall number of drill sites required by designing highly efficient sites with multiple wells on a single pad, designing each well pad area to be as small as possible, and by re-using former sites to avoid additional vegetation and topsoil removal. Rather than waiting until all our production and operational activities are complete, disturbed land not being used is progressively reclaimed.
Canadian Natural also manages its environmental footprint by testing tailings management technologies that will accelerate the pace of reclamation and by developing the first oil sands compensation lake, Horizon Lake (Wãpan Sãkahikan), which supports twice the fisheries habitat that will be lost during the life of our mining operation.