Ready to Adopt? Please fill out our orphan well adoption application.
The Orphan Well Adoption Agency (OWAA) is dedicated to finding caretakers for abandoned oil and gas wells through symbolic adoptions.

*Please note: The Orphan Well Adoption Agency (OWAA) is not to be confused with The Orphan Well Association (OWA), a not-­for-­profit association funded by the oil and gas industry that manages the abandonment of Alberta upstream oil and gas orphan wells and the reclamation of their sites. OWAA has no affiliation with the OWA, or the Alberta Energy Regulator, and is not funded by the oil and gas industry.

Email address *
Applicant, Name in Full *
Your answer
Mailing address
Your answer
Additional Applicants, Names in Full
Your answer
As defined by the Orphan Well Association, an orphan is “is a well, pipeline, facility or associated site which has been investigated and confirmed as not having any legally responsible and/or financially able party to deal with its abandonment and reclamation responsibilities”. These sites threaten to contaminate land, water, and life, with remediation efforts lasting up to a decade. As the oil and gas industry enters rocky times, the orphanage is growing. With over 80,000 inactive wells across the province of Alberta, there are over 4,000 orphan wells up for adoption this year. These wells are in various stages including suspension, abandonment, and reclamation. Unlike the OWA, OWAA extends the definition of orphan wells to include wells in Alberta that have are inactive but not orphaned. With no time limits on how long a well can sit dormant, these sites do not fit the AER definition of an orphan well but are potential hazards. In addition, there are thousands of wells that have been plugged with concrete (part of the remediation process) but the sites haven’t been fully reclaimed. Do you live in Alberta and what is your connection to oil and gas wells in the province both active or inactive? *
Your answer
How long have you been thinking of adopting an orphan well? *
Your answer
Have you previously been the caretaker of an oil or gas well? *
If you answered "yes" to the above question, please indicate current state of the well (inactive or active) and its current status: to-be-abandoned, abandoned, suspended, under reclamation, remediated.
Your answer
What are your motivations for adopting an orphan well? *
Your answer
What experience do you have as a caretaker? This could be in any capacity, it does not have to relate to the oil and gas industry. Examples include children, pets, plants, buildings, spaces, events, etc. *
Your answer
Your prospective well has and continues to go through a period of inactivity. Adopted wells may act out during the early days of adoption causing spills or leaks from deterioration or lack of proper upkeep. Many of our wells have experienced distress from lack of care and attention. If a behavioural problem arises, what steps would you take to address it? *
Your answer
Reclamation of orphan well sites can take up to 10 years with costs ranging from under $20,000 to over $1million. Unfortunately, the OWAA cannot provide timelines for reclamation. Your site may be awaiting reclamation or efforts may already be underway. Various types of assessment, monitoring, and surveys may be undertaken by companies and associations other than the OWAA (for example, electromagnetic surveys and monitoring for contamination). Minor reclamation efforts to wells sites may include weed management, rig servicing, leakage monitoring, fence repair, paratilling, rock picking, removal of debris, repairing access roads, adding small amounts of topsoil, seeding, planting trees, and fencing. Major reclamation may require lease and access road stripping, topsoil replacement, soil re-distribution and/or major re-contouring, weed control and vegetation monitoring. All of this activity while well meaning can be very stressful on a well. Are you able and willing to offer emotional support to your well throughout the reclamation process? *
Your answer
Have you listened to or read any recent reports, information, articles, etc. on orphan wells? Our website www.orphanwelladoptionagency.com has a Resources and Information section which provides links to articles, reports, websites, and papers on inactive wells in Alberta. We suggest that prospective and new caretakers take the time to familiarize themselves with this important literature. You can also find us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/orphanwelladoption *
Your answer
Please select one answer. The average life span of an active oil or gas well is 5 to 50 years. Some of our wells have been inactive for less than a year, while others have been inactive for 30 years or more. Are you willing to make a commitment to this well for the rest of its life? *
Under what circumstances would you "abandon" an oil or gas well? *
Your answer
Please provide your mailing address. If your application is approved we will mail you an adoption certificate and postcard in 6-8 weeks. *
Your answer
The OWAA will also facilitate contact between caretakers and wells through mailed correspondence. Would you be interested in receiving a message from your well? Please note: communication can be challenging for dormant wells and may take up to 15 weeks. *
Next
Never submit passwords through Google Forms.
This content is neither created nor endorsed by Google.