Inactive Exploration Drill Site Remediation and Rehabilitation, North Slope, AK
Weston guides the program for a remote exploration drill site on the Alaska North Slope that was successfully restored to predrilling conditions by removal and disposal of contaminated materials and reseeding of disturbed tundra with native plants.
A number of exploratory oil and gas wells were drilled on the Alaska North Slope in the 1960s and 1970s; this activity ultimately led to the discovery of the Prudhoe Bay Oil Field, the largest oilfield in North America. Industry standards at the time did not require complete cleanup of the sites; therefore, the removal of contaminated materials from the reserve pit, flare pit, and revegetation of the site was subsequently required.
Weston guided a multi-year program at this remote oil and gas exploration drill site to restore it to predrill conditions. We provided planning, preparations, and implementation of remedial actions that resulted in closure of the reserve pit and flare pit with No Further Action concurrence from the state regulatory agency. Weston planted seeds from native plants and is currently monitoring the plant growth as part of the final rehabilitation of the reserve pit, flare pit, and the gravel pad.
Weston ensured that all tasks were completed in one winter field season; in doing so, we avoided the significant costs of remobilization in subsequent winter field seasons (i.e. the cost for ice roads, remote camp mobilization, etc.). In addition, Weston safely implemented the site activities, such as coordinating heavy equipment operations with lighting operations, during winter months and in severe weather conditions (snow, wind, and darkness) of a remote location, with no road access on the edge of the Beaufort Sea on the Alaska North Slope. Revegetation monitoring is ongoing, and site monitoring reports are prepared following each monitoring event. To date, the revegetation is proceeding as expected and anticipated to meet the performance criteria well within the anticipated schedule, if not sooner.