Protecting Water Quality

Corporate Responsibility

Protecting Water Quality

Protecting the quality of our water sources is part of our commitment to managing water use in an efficient way to limit environmental impacts.

Canadian Natural, as a partner with other oil sands operators, manages water withdrawals to ensure that the ecology of the Athabasca River is maintained. In 2012, the oil sands industry represented about 8 per cent of the total water allocated by the Alberta government - less than 1/3 of the total water allocation per year. Oil sands operators use approximately 3 per cent of the Athabasca River’s annual flow.

We have adopted the Hydraulic Fracturing Guiding Principles and Operating Practices developed with industry and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP). These best practices include the public disclosure of water use and chemical additives in shale gas hydraulic fracturing fluids. These practices are designed to improve water management, as well as water and fluids reporting for shale and tight gas development across Canada. These initiatives demonstrate industry’s dedication to responsible resource development and protection of Canada’s water resources in all our operating areas. To learn more about hydraulic fracturing watch this video.

All our UK installations operate 33 per cent below our internal stretch targets of 20 mg/l for oil discharge to the sea, and produced water quality remains well within the regulatory compliance limit of 30 mg/l. In Africa, each installation operates below its ambitious produced water limit as defined in the Environmental Impact Assessments for each field.