“Reclamation” in the Oil and Gas Industry is Generally the Act of Returning the Surface of the Landowner’s Property Back to its Original Condition, or to a Better Condition than Existed Prior to the Commencement of Operations on the Property.
Landowners should seek to negotiate detailed reclaiming Addendum terms to Oil and Gas Leases, Pipeline Right‐of‐Way Agreements, Surface Use Agreements and all other oil and gas related contracts. This addendum language should clearly spell out how and when the property will be reclaimed after surface operations occur. Generic language requires a company to return the surface area to its original condition or better. However, strong reclamation Addendum terms will address the following topics and much more:
- Set a timeframe when reclamation operations must start and be completed;
- Whether Gates or fencing will be required;
- How a pipeline right‐of‐way may be crossed by heavy equipment in the future;
- Require the mulching or removal of non‐marketable timber, stumps, brush, etc.;
- How marketable timber handled and whether timber will remain on the property;
- Stone and rock removal from the surface of the impacted area;
- Provide for specified seeding mixtures for re‐vegetation; and
- Soil testing and PH levels.
Please note that the foregoing is not a complete list of reclamation topics, but provides a primer for reclamation terms.
It is important that Landowners obtain strong and clear reclamation requirements in their oil and gas agreements. Do not simply sign the standard company drafted agreement, even if it includes an Addendum term(s) with bare bones reclamation requirements. Remember, gas and pipeline companies engage in substantial industrial operations on your property with substantial surface impact. Make sure that you are protecting your land and obtaining the strongest reclaiming requirements available.
Unfortunately, no matter what language is in your agreement, gas and pipeline companies do not always fulfill their requirements upon the conclusion of their operations. If your gas or pipeline company has failed to meet their reclamation requirements, call The Clark Law Firm, PC today. Doug Clark represents Landowners to ensure that all companies follow their reclamation requirements. Do not settle for poor reclamation that does not fulfill the company’s obligations under your gas lease, pipeline agreement or other contract.
Attorney Doug Clark is Pennsylvania’s Landowner Lawyer and Doug negotiates and drafts detailed Addendum terms that provide strict reclaiming requirements for your land. However, if a reclamation dispute arises, The Clark Law Firm, PC represents Landowners to ensure that companies comply with all reclaiming requirements in their agreements with the Landowner. Whether you need representation to obtain the strongest reclamation requirements available, or need an attorney to fight the gas or pipeline company to have your property properly reclaimed, Contact the Clark Law Firm, PC today!