Water is a shared and precious resource that must be managed wisely. Responsible energy development means balancing industry’s water requirements with the need to maintain a clean, safe and plentiful supply of this important natural resource for current and future generations. Suncor strives to continuously raise the bar on its corporate-wide water performance and water management practices.
Suncor’s water performance
Suncor views water management as a key part of its Environmental Excellence Plan. As we pursue our goal of reducing corporate-wide fresh water consumption by 12% by 2015 (as compared to 2007), all of our upstream and downstream operations are realizing opportunities for more sustainable water use. We are paying particular attention to our oil sands mining operations, which represent Suncor’s biggest draw on fresh water resources. Read more about oils sands mining
A key benchmark — particularly during periods of production growth — is the amount of water consumed for each barrel of oil produced, also known as water consumption intensity. We continue to make significant progress in this area.
In 2012, our oil sands mining operation consumed 2.06 cubic metres of river water and groundwater to produce one cubic metre of oil — a 10% reduction in water consumption intensity since 2007. We expect to make further incremental changes and improvements as we continue to implement Suncor’s Oil Sands Water Management Strategy. For example, once our new wastewater treatment plant is in operation — commissioning is now planned for 2014 — we expect we will have reduced our river water withdrawal by about 65% compared to 2007. Learn more about our Oil Sands Water Management Strategy
We are also continuing to make significant reductions in water consumption intensity across most of our other business units.
Water Withdrawal and Consumption
* Beginning in 2009, includes consolidated post-merger data.
** The 2011 values were revised from previous years’ reports due to data and process improvements in 2012 which improved the understanding of site conditions for specific facilities.
How Suncor uses and recycles water
Water is an essential part of Suncor's operations. So it's important to find ways to more effectively and efficiently use and recycle water across our business units.
Some key examples: