EL494 Surface Water Monitoring Program 2016-2018

Regions: Sahtu Settlement Area

Tags: physical sciences, contaminants, water quality, hydrocarbon exploration

Principal Investigator: von Kuster, Jenica (2)
Licence Number: 16163
Organization: Husky Oil Operations Limited
Licenced Year(s): 2017 2016
Issued: Aug 24, 2017

Objective(s): To establish natural variations in the surface water conditions within the Exploration Licence (EL 494) area and monitor potential impact of oil and gas exploration activities.

Project Description: The study is to continue to establish natural variations in the surface water conditions within the Exploration Licence (EL 494) area and monitor potential impact of oil and gas exploration activities.

Surface Water Quality Sample Collection:
Collect surface water samples once, during August 2017, from a reduced number of sampling locations targeted near areas where exploration activities have occurred. The water samples will be used to evaluate the water quality of surface water bodies flowing onto and off of EL 494. The suite of parameters to be analyzed during the monitoring program is outlined below. Grab samples will be collected from each location. At each sample location, field parameters (i.e., pH, specific conductivity, temperature, dissolved oxygen, and oxidation reduction potential) will be measured using a YSI 556 multi-meter (or similar). Prior to use, equipment will be calibrated according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Observed parameters will be documented.

Sample preparation:
Laboratory supplied bottles and new filters will be used at each location to obtain samples; and clean nitrile gloves will be used during the field program and replaced frequently at every sample collection point. Sterile laboratory-supplied sample containers with appropriate preservatives will be used for sampling. Once collected, the samples will be kept cooled at approximately 4 degrees Celsius and shipped under chain-of-custody to the selected analytical laboratory.

Laboratory Analyses:
Surface water and groundwater will be analyzed by a laboratory accredited for specific analytical tests under the Canadian Association for Laboratory Accreditation Inc. All laboratory directions regarding appropriate bottles, filtering and preservation will be followed and sample containers will be filled consistent with the analytical requirements. In general, any parameter that requires filtering will be filtered in the field, and subsequently preserved if necessary. Sample containers will be labeled prior to sample collection and placed in appropriate coolers or packaged for shipping.

Quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) samples will be collected. Field blanks will be collected in the field, using laboratory supplied deionized water. Blind duplicates will be collected from the sampling location immediately after the original sample, filling bottles for similar analytical groups for the original and then for the duplicate, before filling bottles for other analytical groups. Blind duplicates will be labelled with a fictitious name or sample number, leaving the laboratory “blind” to the origin of the sample, or the fact that it is a QA/QC sample.

Husky will prepare a combined surface water report and submit it to the Sahtu Land and Water Board (SLWB) by March 31 of the following year. This will allow sufficient time for analyses, interpretation and report preparation of all sampling events, the last of which will occur in the fall. Husky will also share information gathered for the programs with the community and community leadership during public consultations. The report will include recommendations for any changes to the programs based on the findings obtained to date, obvious data gaps and any collaborative review of data from other research or studies in the area. The analytical suite will be reviewed annually and adjusted based on scientific judgment and may choose to increase the analytical suite for parameters of interest.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from August 24, 2017 to September 10, 2017.