Environmental Planning and Monitoring

Corporate Responsibility

Environmental Planning and Monitoring

We incorporate environmental considerations and planning into all phases of our projects and work co-operatively and effectively with communities, government agencies and stakeholders to reduce the potential impacts of our operations.

Environmental planning begins with site assessments at the time of acquisition or prior to construction. For example, our major projects require Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) and Pre-Disturbance Assessments (PDAs). EIAs are an important tool in our regulatory applications that support our growth and development plans by providing a thorough understanding of potential project-related impacts.

Environmental and socioeconomic impact assessments also highlight any regional risks to be addressed in project planning, so we can implement long-term management, monitoring and mitigation strategies, which are developed in consultation with stakeholders. For example, we document traditional ecological knowledge that is shared by Indigenous communities and consider its use when compiling baseline environmental information, and developing monitoring and mitigation programs (e.g., reclamation).

Regional frameworks and collaboration

The Provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia have established frameworks for the management of air, land and water. Canadian Natural has adopted those frameworks into our operating practices to implement comprehensive mitigation plans for sensitive landscapes, wildlife and aquatic systems. These environmental frameworks establish, for instance, limits on emissions, restrictions on water use, tailings reclamation timelines, and conservation of land and biodiversity. We also participate in research programs for land planning, caribou restoration and reclaimed land.

Environmental monitoring allows us to continually measure our performance, establish targets and work towards improvement. Canadian Natural supports environmental monitoring as a part of responsible resource development through openness, transparency and the generation of scientifically reliable data that addresses public/stakeholder concerns. Monitoring of air emissions, water use and land disturbance occurs at our larger facilities. We participate in local and regional air monitoring programs in Alberta, Saskatchewan and British Columbia, as well as federal monitoring programs.

We also support regional monitoring of the oil sands conducted by AEP, to assess the state of the environment and cumulative effects related to air, land and water, to maintain ecological functions and restore areas as part of long-term reclamation planning. For example, Canadian Natural works closely with the Fort McKay First Nation, located near our oil sands mining operations, to improve monitoring on traditional land.

We work with government, industry, and other stakeholders to implement and advance environmental policy. As a member of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) we are involved in various regional multi-stakeholder groups. Additionally, we are committed to accelerating the pace of environmental performance improvements in Canada’s oil sands and actively participate and share best practices with industry.