Land reclamation is restoring disturbed land in the interest of returning it to its nearly original much improved or useful state. The need to restore the land comes from the effect of land use, including mining activities and exploration by energy, oil, and gas industries as several of them reduce the quality and productivity of the land on which they operate.
For countries like Canada, the fifth largest oil producer in the globe operating the third-highest oil reserve in the world, exploration activities on the country’s land are significant, making reclamation an important need throughout.
In addition to ensuring land is not left in ruin, reclamation promotes reasonable environmental benefits ranging from improving biodiversity down to sustainable designs created to support humans and our ecosystem.
Let’s dig deeper to understand the land reclamation process.
Land Reclamation: The Process
Land reclamation isn’t an easy fix but rather a well planned and resourceful project with strategic measures and processes. It is considered and documented at the start of an exploration project and involves planning out the reclamation requirements based on unique land characteristics and the nature of the work previously performed as part of the initial project.
As reclamation occurs after the project, energy companies must completely abandon the site before planned reclamation processes can commence. This involves the removal of all equipment and infrastructure from the land.
Exploration activities by energy companies can result in several forms of contamination. As a result, there is a need to:
- Perform site assessment to identify type of contamination, extent, and depth.
- Perform the remediation actions to clear out the contamination (actions vary with the nature of each contamination).
This is the action taken to restore the land. These activities vary based on the nature of the project and the reclamation plan established before the project cycle. The plan will be a function of surveys, data, and subsurface analytics.
Reclamation activities can include, but are not limited to:
- Drainage restoration
- Soil replacement (land filling)
- And other actions peculiar to the energy site.
Inspection and Audit
Land reclamation is an important responsibility placed on several industries and as a result, it comes with national policies imposed by regulating bodies.
After completing the reclamation exercise, the regulatory bodies step in to assess if the process is in sync with the plan, effective towards its need and up to their high standards.
How Land Reclamation Is Done- Traditional Methods Vs. Aerial Drone Solutions
Several years ago, having determined the required reclamation activities for the energy site, trucks, tractors, and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) were employed and mobilized into the site to carry out the different operations. This method comes with significant challenges.
- Labor intensive: requires a large number of personnel
- Huge challenges across large expanses of land including hard-to-reach areas
- High cost to buy, run and maintain equipment
- High level of human error
Aerial Drone Solutions
Land reclamation services have been made much easier with the rise of aerial drone solutions. Little wonder several companies have embraced the technology. Looking at the several frailties of the traditional method, drones have been positioned to do better:
- Drones cover large areas in little time
- Reduced labor costs as drones are remotely controlled by one operator
- Low level of errors
- The drones can reach any area of the site.
- Drones have sensors and necessary attached equipment for different reclamation actions. Hence efficiency is in place.
Land reclamation services are much better with drone technology. Strongfield Environmental Solutions provides state-of-the-art aerial drone solutions as one of the leading drone companies in Canada. Contact us today!