Cenovus moves to protect the woodland caribou
Cenovus Energy has announced it will invest $32 million over the next 10 years to restore woodland caribou habitat near the Cold Lake area in northeastern Alberta.
The Caribou Habitat Restoration Project will involve restoring linear disturbances around old oil & gas plants and planting 4 million trees. The move is voluntary and comes one week after the provincial government announced its own plans to protect the woodland caribou. This will be the largest caribou habitat restoration project in the world.
Over the past 3 years, the company has successfully restored about 3,900 km² of forest, removing linear disturbances such as oil and gas seismic lines and access roads. Reforestation of these areas reduces forest fragmentation and helps protect the caribou from its natural predators, particularly wolves.
Woodland caribou are a subspecies of caribou found in the boreal forests and mountain regions of Canada from Newfoundland to British Columbia. The caribou are considered a threatened species under the federal Species at Risk Act.
Much of the restoration work completed by Cenovus to date has been done by local First Nations contracting companies. Cenovus is sharing its findings with other oil & gas operators through Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA). The Cenovus Caribou Habitat Restoration Project is one of several coordinated industry caribou initiatives currently underway.