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Tribal Energy and Environmental Information Clearinghouse: Environmental resources for tribal energy development
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Transportation Mitigation Measures

Mitigation measures to avoid or reduce transportation impacts from oil and gas production.

The following are examples of mitigation measures that could be applied to reduce transportation impacts of a project depending upon site- and project-specific conditions. Transportation impacts are related to the amount and types of vehicular traffic associated with a project. Many impacts can be reduced or avoided when considered during the siting and design phase.

Develop a final set of mitigation measures for any project in consultation with the appropriate federal resource management agencies and stakeholders. Conduct these consultations early in the project development process and preferably prior to final project siting and design.

Siting and Design Mitigation Measures

Siting and design considerations that mitigate impacts include:

  • Prepare an access road siting study and management plan to guide road design, construction, and maintenance standards, and to allow for successful interim and final reclamation. (For example, require operators to coordinate closely with the local governments responsible for maintaining roadways providing access to the project area. Compare the number, size, and weight of loads to service projects to the existing road infrastructure to determine if roads and bridges are adequate to support intended loads. Consider routing project traffic to minimize impacts on local residents.)
  • Plan to use existing roads to the extent possible.
  • Install permanent and temporary access roads as needed to support drilling/development and production phases of the project, but minimize the number and length of such roads. For exploratory drilling activities, consider using primitive or two-track road access rather than constructing a higher quality access road.
  • Develop a traffic management plan for site access roads and for use of main public roads.
  • Develop and implement measures to control off-highway vehicle traffic off of newly constructed access roads.

General Mitigation Measures

General mitigation practices and principles that could apply to any or all phases of an oil and gas project include:

  • Limit traffic to roads and portions of rights-of-way indicated specifically for the project. Limit use of unimproved roads to emergency use only.
  • Instruct and require all personnel and contractors to adhere to speed limits to ensure safe and efficient traffic flow.
  • Encourage project employees to carpool to work sites.
  • Limit construction vehicle traffic on public roadways to off-peak commuting times to minimize impacts on local commuters.
  • Restore roads to equal or better condition than before project construction after the heavy construction period is complete.
  • Control dust along unsurfaced roads, especially near residences and farm fields.

Project Phase-Specific Mitigation Measures

Mitigation measures specific to a particular phase of an oil and gas project include:

Production Controls and Guidelines

  • Depending on the situation, consider minimizing the amount of vehicular traffic and human activity. Examples include use of pipeline collection systems and remote well site monitoring.