This 2016 year, Devon Energy piloted two more conservation projects on Wyoming’s public land connecting the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the United States Forest Service (USFS) to the Wyoming Conservation Corps to tear down non-wildlife friendly fences, enhance habitat, remove noxious plants, pick up trash, and a little trail work.
It is a tribute to Devon Energy’s commitment to conservation and sustainability that this year marks our 9th year working together. From Devon’s water conservation practices in Canada to being one of the first energy companies to build in proper buffer zones for wildlife to Devon winning the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission’s 2015 Chairman’s Stewardship Award, Devon’s “Commitment Runs Deep” slogan is no joke. This year, I casually asked one of our more environmentally minded members after touring a Devon oil pad, “Do you like Devon more or less now?” She smiled and said, “I can’t believe I am saying this…but, Devon gets it. They care about the environment.”It is no surprise that Devon Energy’s Government Affairs Adviser, Nick Agopian, started the WCC program while in law school at the University of Wyoming before launching his career with Devon.
Year after year, Devon Energy’s Education Days with the WCC rank as some of our best. Two crews toured an oil rig with Devon employees learning the ins and outs of how an oil pad works and how those resources are turned into energy. Crews also participated in discussions lead by Devon employees and joined by professionals in environmental management.
For this year’s Devon Volunteer day, roughly 15-20 Devon Energy and BLM volunteers worked alongside the 9 of us WCC folks in hardhats. We worked on removing obsolete and decrepit fence dangerous to wildlife on BLM land for the better part of a day under a cloudless sky on the High Plains. Thank you to all of the volunteers who showed up and worked with our crews on a worthy project.
All Said and Done with Devon:
- (about) 100 invasive juniper trees removed
- 22 invasive pinyon pines removed
- 700 yards of barbwire fence repaired
- .25 miles of buck and rail fence repaired
- 2 miles of trail maintained and improved
- 1 steel gate repaired at a camp entrance
- 3 campgrounds cleaned up
- numerous benches painted and repaired
- 3.5 miles of fence deconstructed
- 2 acres of dug in barbwire removed
- 2 tours of an oil pad
- 16 crew members encouraged that natural resources extraction can be done responsibly
To learn more about the details and see pictures of both the Devon Energy hitches this year – find Hitch 4 and Hitch 6 reports. We don’t have too many pictures of the wire fencing because…well…we were too busy to think about taking pictures. Next time.