A multi-state agency has recognized Devon for its work to improve the environment and enhance wildlife habitat on Wyoming’s public lands.

Devon won the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission’s 2015 Chairman’s Stewardship Award for Best Environmental Partnership. The IOGCC represents the governors of more than three dozen oil-and-natural-gas-producing states.

The award recognizes the company for the financial and volunteer support it lends to the Wyoming Conservation Corps (WCC), a University of Wyoming-based organization dedicated environmental conservation projects.

Threats to Wyoming’s public lands range from erosion and wildfire to livestock encroachment and invasive vegetation. State and federal agencies spend millions of dollars each year to ensure the sustainability of wildlife reserves, parks, recreation areas and other lands.

Devon first partnered with the WCC in 2007. For nearly a decade, Devon volunteers have worked with WCC students on projects identified by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and Wyoming’s Office of State Lands Investment. Each year, crews tackle labor-intensive tasks that would otherwise require tens of thousands of dollars from agency budgets already stretched thin.

Armed with chain saws, shovels, wheelbarrows and other tools, teams of students and Devon volunteers work to curtail erosion near rivers, streams and lakes. They protect wildlife through habitat improvement, build fences that are wildlife friendly or remove fences that restrict access to food or impede seasonal migration.

Workers reduce the potential of forest fires by removing fuel sources. They also improve public areas to enhance visitor experiences for everyone who visits Wyoming’s parks and recreational lands.

In addition to volunteer work in the field, we spend time educating WCC students about the energy industry, leading tours of drilling sites and production facilities, creating learning opportunities that could be helpful for future professionals in environmental fields that intersect with the oil and natural gas industry.

The Chairman's Stewardship Awards is the IOGCC’s highest honor for exemplary efforts by the oil and natural gas industry in environmental stewardship. Devon earned the same award in 2008 for its pioneering effort to recycle produced water in the Barnett Shale.

Stewardship is one of the great untold success stories of the oil and natural gas industry. Projects recognized through the award program represent only a sample of those in operation around the world, the agency says.

Published: September 2015