Wapisiw reclamation site in the oil sands

Title: Wapisiw reclamation site in the oil sands

Suncor is the first Alberta oil sands company to convert a tailings pond to a stable surface solid enough to be re-vegetated.
Wapisiw, oil sands, pond, reclamation, arial, environment, vegetation, landscape
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Planting seedlings

Over the next two decades, Suncor Energy will closely monitor progress on the site, including the growth of 630,000 shrubs and trees planted in 2010.

Cover crop of native grasses and oats

A cover crop of native grasses and oats were planted on Pond 1 as part of its reclamation.

Wildlife trees were placed on Pond 1

Called snags or wildlife trees, dead trees have been deliberately placed (some even upside down) on Pond 1 to create perches and nesting sites for birds, and habitat for other wildlife.

Streams and mounds reproduce natural drainage patterns

Pond 1 has been carefully designed with small streams (swales) and mounds (hummocks) to help reproduce natural drainage patterns.

Creating the surface of Pond 1

Pond 1 surface construction involved covering it with a layer of soil 50 cm deep. About 65,000 truckloads of soil were used.

Suncor Energy's Pond 1 in August 2010

In time, we expect this land will become a productive mixed wood forest and wetland environment.

Oats serve as a cover crop

Oats make a good cover crop for Pond 1 because the tall plants protect the vulnerable young tree and shrub seedlings during their critical first year.