Goals and Objectives
Safety and Environmental Responsibility
Safety is a core value at Ovintiv. We work closely with our suppliers to identify and implement strategies to improve our safety performance.
Along with adherence to regulations and industry best practices, Ovintiv focuses on safe, reliable and proactive operations through our environment, health and safety management system, Ethos. This system helps us measure, track, know and understand our environment, health and safety performance. Ethos turns the goals and objectives set by our environment, health and safety policies into transparent accomplishments. Ethos is an accountability tool that will help us understand our performance and guide our future behaviors as we continually strive to improve how we care for people’s health, safety and the environment.
Ovintiv ensures regular consultation with stakeholders within proximity to operations associated with Area Emergency Response Plans (ERPs), including members of the public, local governments, first responders and health authorities. Through our proactive communication efforts, we identify and make available to our stakeholders critical information such as potential hazards, emergency response procedures, contact information and roles and responsibilities.
Internally, Ovintiv maintains and regularly reviews our ERPs, conducts emergency response training sessions and exercises for all key personnel and parties involved. We maintain an extensive in-house inventory of spill response supplies and equipment strategically located at key locations for immediate response, until other resources can be mobilized to the site.
We observe ERP activation requirements to ensure that all the necessary and appropriate actions are taken to resolve emergency situations, protect the public and workers and mitigate damage to the environment and property. This includes working in partnership with other stakeholders.
Our management program includes incident investigation and implementation of any necessary remediation and shared learnings within the company and industry as appropriate.
To effectively prevent and mitigate risks associated with our operations, Ovintiv’s ERP is an integrated program with a cross-section of management systems from health and safety, asset integrity, security, environment and operations. Our teams work closely to ensure that if a leak or spill occurs, the consequence is minimized through our ERPs and spill preparedness programs.
Incident Management System
An incident management system is a standardized approach to emergency management that includes personnel, facilities, equipment, procedures and communications operating within a common organizational structure. Ovintiv uses an Incident Command System (ICS) based on the standards set forth by ICS Canada.
ICS provides a common hierarchy and an integrated organizational structure for all aspects of the response to enable effective and efficient incident management. The system brings together the functions of our company with federal, provincial and local governments as well as other local authorities.
Key elements of any ICS include: organizational collaboration, flexible organization, integrated communications, consolidated incident action planning, unity of command and designated incident facilities.
Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment and Controls
At Ovintiv, we focus on proactive risk management, from risk identification, assessment and monitoring, to mitigation and control across our operations. Our integrated emergency management system has multiple safeguards in place to prevent spills, releases or other potential hazards from occurring.
We have systems in place which extend to a broad range of potential hazardous situations.
Our risk analysis process is supported by a dispersion modeling software used to predetermine emergency planning zones (EPZs)—areas surrounding facilities that require specific
emergency response planning as mandated by applicable regulatory guidelines. EPZs are plotted on ERP maps to provide a visual image of the risk areas in relation to structures, roadways and geographical elements such as waterways or bodies. These areas are used to identify stakeholders who may be at the greatest risk and require consultation to ensure their awareness of the possible hazards and risks associated with our facilities/pipelines. Once the risk level of the hazard has been determined, emergency response preparedness controls are put in place to mitigate and address the potential consequences. These controls can include, but are not limited to, emergency equipment,
clean-up resources, safety guidelines and mutual aid understandings. We periodically perform internal ERP audits, reviews and updates to ensure our emergency response information is compliant with regulatory requirements.
Ovintiv’s monitoring and control systems are installed throughout our gathering system, including leak detection systems, emergency shut-down devices and other remote data monitoring systems. In the unlikely event of a spill, we have an extensive in-house inventory of spill response supplies and equipment strategically located at key locations for accessibility.
Stakeholder Liaison to Prepare for Emergencies
To ensure efficient communication and coordination during an emergency, we proactively conduct annual consultations with key stakeholders impacted by our operations—local municipalities, urban centers, health authorities and other first responders—in order to:
- Confirm and collect key contact information.
- Identify and clarify roles and responsibilities.
- Inform the agency of Ovintiv’s practices and procedures, potential hazards and risk controls and mitigation.
- Explore possible mutual aid options.
Our annual consultations are generally conducted by telephone, electronically or one-on-one meetings. Information collected during this process is incorporated into our Emergency Response Plans along with required provincial and federal authority Incident Reporting information.
Ovintiv maintains ongoing communication with other organizations and agencies, as well as the public living near our operations. The information we share includes the location of our operations, potential hazards, potential emergency situations involving a pipeline and safety procedures.
Our Public Information Package provides guidance on what to do in an emergency and who to contact if an emergency is identified. There is also a diligent focus on education of safety procedures by using hazard assessments and safety orientations for persons attending Ovintiv sites.
When appropriate, we also conduct public meetings and targeted information sessions to ensure stakeholders are aware of our operations and emergency management policies.
Training and Exercises
Ovintiv maintains emergency response training and exercise schedule for our employees and suppliers to maintain an effective state of readiness for emergencies at all operating sites. Training and exercises are mandatory for all levels in the company, from field operations to senior management. Exercises are held at minimum on an annual basis and may consist of presentations or mock simulations.
To ensure a coordinated response to any emergency, local municipalities/urban centers, health region authorities, RCMP and/or local police and applicable regulatory agencies (e.g. NEB, AER, BC OGC) are invited to attend and participate in our major exercises.
Emergency management training takes place in Calgary, Denver, The Woodlands and field locations. It includes many elements as identified in our core Emergency Response Plan.