Our Commitment To You
As we develop new wells and maintain our current wells in your community, our highest priority is to conduct our business in a manner that protects the health, safety, and welfare of communities, our employees, and the environment. We will work with you to provide up-to-date information and mitigate impacts to the greatest extent possible.
Our Best Practices and Mitigation Measures
We strive to make our activities compatible with the surrounding community and use various mitigation techniques to reduce the temporary impacts associated with development. Our team designs each location after careful consideration of the area’s specific attributes. Although some of our operations are conducted 24/7, we aim to minimize non-essential work during the night. For each well pad, we deploy the following strategies to mitigate possible impacts including:
We use upgraded drilling rigs with noise reducing features and quiet hydraulic fracturing technology engineered with pump enclosures. These features reduce the noise from our operations. In addition to mitigating noise at the source, we also install sound walls, as needed, when we operate near communities.
We use light-emitting diode (LED) lights strategically oriented away from homes, making our operations less visible to our neighbors.
To counteract any potential hydrocarbon odor during our drilling operations, we proactively add an odor neutralizer to the drilling fluid system.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has conducted testing and determined that odors during drilling operations do not pose health risks.
Road and Traffic
We reduce traffic as much as possible through oil transfer and Water-On-Demand systems. The oil produced from our horizontal locations is transported off-site through a pipeline, eliminating the need for trucks. We transport the water used in hydraulic fracturing through our innovative Water-On-Demand pipeline system, further reducing truck traffic.
Since its inception in 2012, this technology has enabled Oxy to eliminate 60 million miles of truck traffic from the roads in Weld County, reducing emissions, dust, road wear, and inconvenience to our neighbors. This system also reduces our surface footprint by eliminating the need to store water in tanks onsite during well completion.
To ensure the wellbeing of you and your family and those living and working near our operations, we take action to reduce emissions and monitor air quality.
To reduce greenhouse gas emissions and utilize the valuable energy resources we produce, we select equipment and design our locations and procedures to minimize emissions. As you can see in the graph below, we have been successful in our efforts.
Occidental is the first U.S. oil and gas company to endorse The World Bank's Zero Routine Flaring by 2030 initiative. In Colorado, we have already achieved zero routine flaring.
During drilling, over 90% of the power comes from Tier IV engines. In addition, the hydraulic fracturing pumping equipment is 100% powered by Tier IV engines. Tier IV engines meet the latest and most stringent requirements for off-road diesel engines as designated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Our innovative tankless production facility reduces air emissions in several ways. Tankless means we eliminated oil storage tanks, which significantly lowers facility emissions. Transporting oil off-site through a pipeline further reduces emissions associated with truck traffic. The design also uses compressed air to operate pneumatic controllers, which regulate pressure, flow, temperature, and liquid levels, on over 90% of our production. Using compressed air eliminates emissions that typically come from natural gas-driven pneumatic controllers.
During drilling and completions, independent third-party environmental air quality experts perform continuous air quality monitoring. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) approves our air monitoring program and receives monthly reports. You can find the monthly monitoring reports created by the third-party consultant on our webpage under Project Updates.
Independent third-party air quality experts use traditional and innovative technologies to add context to and validate the data collected. Air monitoring stations include a weather station, a hydrocarbon analyzer, and carbon sorbent tubes. In addition, strategically placed air canisters may supplement data from the air monitoring stations. Air samples are collected and analyzed according to EPA standards. The results are compared to health guideline values set by the CDPHE.
Air monitoring data is collected continuously and is monitored 24/7 by our Integrated Operations Center (IOC). Our monitoring program establishes response and investigation levels designed to protect the health, safety, and welfare of communities, our employees, and the environment. Additionally, our 24/7 IOC ensures responses are both timely and effective.
To monitor emissions near our production facilities, we have an in-house emissions team that conducts leak detection and repair inspections. During the production phase, every facility is inspected periodically by trained individuals using a handheld infrared camera. We also use infrared camera-equipped drones and conduct frequent audio/visual/olfactory inspections to detect and control emissions.
We conduct baseline water-quality sampling and construct double-walled produced water sumps and secondary containment for operations. Sensors between the walls of the water sumps and additional automation allow us to remotely monitor fluid levels and remotely shut in the wells if we detect an issue.
We protect wildlife and habitats, ensuring future generations have an opportunity to enjoy the beauty of Colorado and the incredible diversity of species that live here. We contract with environmental engineers and wildlife biologists to create wildlife protection plans during the development planning process. The wildlife protection plans ensure our development and operations protect the habitat and health of migratory birds and raptors, threatened and endangered species, and other sensitive species.
We recently joined with others to donate $3.1 million to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to support large-scale restoration projects to benefit wildlife habitats and local communities.
Our Integrated Operations Center (IOC) in Platteville, staffed 24 hours per day, 365 days per year, enables real-time monitoring of the wells, production facilities, and water tanks. Additionally, the system allows us to monitor personnel locations and surrounding features, including sensitive areas, bodies of water, habitats, and communities. The IOC also serves as a point of contact 24/7 for inquiries from community members.”
WHAT PEOPLE SAY
“Thanks to the Occidental pad construction crew for watering the gravel road near operations, and mitigating the dust.”
— Fort Lupton, CO Homeowner