Long Term Revegetation Success of Industry Reclamation Techniques for Native Prairie

GL 09-9167-50
Jane Lancaster, Kestral Research

The purpose of this research project is to provide industry and the government of Alberta regulatory agencies with results and key learnings regarding the long term recovery of native mixedgrass prairie from industrial disturbance. The project focuses on minimal disturbance pipeline construction and documents the long term outcome of three revegetation strategies commonly used in the Mixedgrass Natural Subregion of Alberta, including use of natural recovery, assisted natural recovery (agronomic cover crops) and native seed mixes. Work that was done on the Husky Majorville Sweet Gas Gathering System (JWA 2008), Cypress Pipeline (AXYS et al. 2003) and Merry Flats Sweet Gas Gathering System (AXYS et al. 2004) projects can be considered a best case scenario for restoration of Mixedgrass rangelands; the pastures are large and in generally good range health with relatively few invasive species. The oil and gas developments were led and executed by responsible people who were committed to ensuring their projects met and exceeded guidelines for minimum disturbance.

The three projects are located in two different Ecodistricts in the Mixedgrass Natural Subregion. The Husky Majorville Sweet Gas Gathering System is located in the Majorville Uplands Ecodistrict. Monitoring data was collected four years after construction and seven years after construction in 2011. The Cypress Pipeline (AXYS et al. 2003) and Merry Flats Sweet Gas Gathering System (AXYS et al. 2004) are both located in the Cypress Uplands Ecodistrict. Monitoring in 2011 provided the opportunity to expand data sets collected one, two and three years’ post-disturbance with data collected 11 and 12 years post-disturbance.

Policy Issue
The effectiveness of industrial footprint reclamation.

Knowledge Gap
Techniques for effective reclamation in native habitats


2010 Presentation