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Wrong Bryan Whiteley?

Bryan W. Whiteley

Reclamation Coordinator

EnCana Corporation

Direct Phone: (970) ***-****       

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EnCana Corporation

Suite 4400 500 Centre Street S E

Calgary, Alberta T2P 2S5


Company Description

Encana is a leading North American energy producer that is focused on developing its strong portfolio of resource plays, held directly and indirectly through its subsidiaries, producing natural gas, oil and natural gas liquids (NGLs). By partnering with e ... more

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Background Information

Web References (14 Total References)

Encana and the Lifespan Planning Approach (LPA) [cached]

Whitely explains that "in a harsh range like this one, only natives will work."

When I got to the meeting spot, Encana Reclamation Coordinator Bryan Whitely stood outside his white pick-up truck with hard hats, jumpsuits and protective eyewear, clearly ready to start the day. As we piled in to head out, Whitely began passionately explaining how things had changed in the industry. "Contrast is a beautiful thing" he said as we pulled up to our first stop.
Whitely explained how they had used a process known as land-forming to introduced hydrologic variation in the landscape, more in keeping with the land's natural state, in order to promote native establishment and diversity.
Whitely then took us to production sites that had been designed and constructed before he began working for Encana at a time when the impacts of oil and gas development were poorly understood.
Whitely excavates the area to be drilled so that he can form the resulting soil into large berms. These berms completely encircle the well pad, offering spill containment, noise and visual impact reduction, and prevent stormwater pollution and sedimentation by containing and filtering them on site. The site's elegance resides in the fact that Whiteley seeds and mulches the berms to minimize soil loss by erosion during production, making the well pad, from a distance, look like nothing more than a gentle hill. When production activities stop, the well can be completed and the top soils simply pushed back to their original position. Whitely then land forms the area to restore its natural hydrologic patterns, mulches, and finally re-seeds the area.

"Breaking Down the Reclamation Process of ... [cached]

"Breaking Down the Reclamation Process of an Oil and Gas Company: "...GARFIELD COUNTY, Colo.- Brian Whiteley, an award-winning reclamation construction coordinator for Encana Oil and Gas, loves to talk shop. His job is to make sure lands are returned to better condition than they were before drilling began. "Oil and gas is held to a higher standard than any other industry," said Whiteley..." " (Video, KREX) (Colorado)-

GARFIELD COUNTY, Colo. - Brian ... [cached]

GARFIELD COUNTY, Colo. - Brian Whiteley, an award-winning reclamation construction coordinator for Encana Oil and Gas, loves to talk shop.

His job is to make sure lands are returned to better condition than before drilling began. "Oil and gas is held to a higher standard than any other industry," said Whiteley.
He says the rest of the state has to reach a 70 percent vegetation standard, whereas oil and gas must maintain at least 80 percent. "It doesn't seem like much, but it's a very high standard in a dry land environment," added Whiteley.
Each site varies, but on average, the initial drilling phases of an oil pad can use around five acres, as well as nearby roads.
In order to restore the landscape afterward, Encana reseeds the lands to the owner's specifications (whether it's federal or private). "(This) is three years of re-vegetation," said Whiteley, referring to a site in Battlement Mesa.
On federal lands, Encana must use visual and audio tactics to become nearly invisible to the passerby.
Walls created out of dirt keep equipment noise below the required decibels. "It also acts as a visual screen," added Whiteley.
All equipment on well pads situated on federal lands have to be painted a specific color based on the natural habitat of that area. In the Bureau of Land Management's Pinyon-Juniper Woodlands, that color is shadow gray.
Once the entire site is dead, all equipment is removed and the ground is filled in. Constructed boulder walls come down to re-contour the area, which is mixed with mulch and spread roughly to retain moisture. "That's a significant advantage when you're trying to restore habitat," Whiteley noted.

Bryan Whiteley, a resident of ... [cached]

Bryan Whiteley, a resident of Battlement Mesa, is the reclamation and construction coordinator for Encana in Garfield County.

He is in charge of building the massive berms, conducting the revegetation and creating the land forms that cover up scars on the landscape created by drilling and other industry activities.
Speaking at the monthly meeting of the Garfield County Energy Advisory Board on Thursday in Rifle, Whiteley explained that the most important aspect of his work is preserving topsoil.
"You do poor topsoil management, you end up with poor reclamation," he told his audience of about 25 people, seated in a conference room at the Rifle Branch Library.
The best way to preserve topsoil, Whiteley said, is to deposit it into separate storage piles so different types of soil are not irretrievably mixed up.
These soils can be shaped into berms to surround a drilling site or some other work area.
Once there, he said, it is left alone until needed as much as 30 years or more later, when reclamation goes into high gear at the end of the well's productive life.
Reclamation work, Whiteley explained, involves close coordination of multiple departments within a drilling company and with governmental agencies.
Working together, the company and agencies analyze the topography, soil makeup, moisture potential and other parameters of the environment surrounding a drilling site.
Then they determine the nature of the preparations needed to yield the best potential reclamation outcome, once the well site is abandoned after 30 years or more and the final reclamation work is undertaken.
During the decades between the commencement of drilling and the final reclamation phase, Whiteley explained, there are interim reclamation measures conducted that are less extensive than the final phase.
Other key aspects of the work, he said, include the type of seed used in revegetation efforts, the type of land forms used for containment of the drilling site and in the reclamation once that site is abandoned, and how the topsoil is redistributed for the final phase.
According to Whiteley, soil type influences revegetation. Loamy soils, he said, typically yield grasses, while aggregate type soils encourage the propagation of shrubs and piƱon-juniper stands.
Reclamation also is heavily dependent on whose land is being reclaimed, he told the EAB.
Federal land managers have regulations that narrowly structure the reclamation process, including what kind of vegetation should be used. Private landowners are less predictable, he said.
The attitude of private landowners, according to Whiteley, is that it is their property and "it's none of your fracking business" how it looks after the drilling is finished.
"Sometimes they want to put barns, trailers and other things on it," he said of reclaimed rig sites. So the landowner may request that the land be left flat rather than contoured or shaped back the way it was prior to drilling.
The final reclamation phase, Whiteley said, is the most important, and he showed slides of certain well pad sites that looked green and healthy compared to their appearance during the drilling and other activities.

Bryan Whiteley, a surface ... [cached]

Bryan Whiteley, a surface management coordinator for Encana, shows a well pad that was seeded with oats and other grasses at the request of the landowner.

Bryan Whiteley, a surface management coordinator for Encana, shows a well pad that was seeded with oats and other grasses at the request of the landowner.
Efforts led by Whiteley recently got statewide notice, however, when the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission gave his company, EnCana Oil & Gas (USA) Inc., two awards for well-pad reclamation.
One award was for methods EnCana has used to reduce the visual impacts of its pads in areas such as along western Colorado's Interstate 70 corridor. The other was for managing topsoil on pads in a way that betters protects the topsoil and its revegetation values while achieving other goals such as stormwater management.
"The awards are a recognition of the innovative work Bryan has done for EnCana, helping the company to address surface impacts more comprehensively and cost effectively," company spokesman Doug Hock said.
In addition, contractors who have become adept in carrying out the company's approaches are suggesting it to other companies, said Whiteley, a surface-management coordinator for EnCana.
"They (contractors) say, 'Oh, we can do this. It will cost less, and it will be better,' " Whiteley said.
He said the visual-mitigation methods also can increase companies' access to BLM lands in areas where minimal visual effect of oil and gas development is one of the agency's highest priorities.
Whiteley said he has seen BLM officials be unable to detect such a reclaimed slope from a distance.
It also helps to segregate various topsoil types, Whiteley said.
A crucial matter for Whiteley is that, unlike a pile on the pad, the berms tend to be out of reach for contractors tempted to use topsoil for dirtwork other than topsoil replacement.
"By having it on the perimeter, it doesn't disappear like it used to," he said.
And, while a pile can be spread around a pad with a bulldozer for reclamation, moving topsoil from berms back to the pad usually requires a backhoe, which means reduced soil compaction and improved revegetation, Whiteley said.
Improving stormwater management and revegetation practices saves money because it reduces the risks of penalties for noncompliance, and makes for more stable well pads that are easier to manage and require fewer inspections and less record-keeping, Whiteley said.

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