Employer: Unocal Canada (Chevron)
Position: Summer Student and Holiday Relief Operator
Location: Aitken Creek, North-East of Fort St. John, BC.
Dates: May 1 to September 7, 2006
My main duties at the Unocal Storage and Processing Gas Plant included scraping, cleaning and painting piping, compressors and floors as well as monitoring ground water boreholes from a past oil leak. I also entered waste manifest sheets into a spreadsheet to monitor waste production and picked scentless chamomile and cleaned small oil spills. I performed many operational duties including checking levels, temperatures, filling fluids, looking for equipment and machinery problems, starting compressors, and gauging tanks.
The internship started out as a disappointment because I was painting by myself for two months. This changed when I took action and convinced my supervisors to give me more to do. In school we learn about emissions controls and what the government is trying to accomplish and reduce through different policies. Out in the field I was able to learn first hand what and where the emissions come from. I also learned how to manage my time and create a schedule for what I had to accomplish as I was given a list and told to go do it. I plan to work in the oil patch as a career in consulting or soil remediation. This position helped to understand where and how pollution is made and how government policies are complied with. It also gave me an idea of the attitudes and ideas of the workers of the oil patch about the environment and helped me learn to manage my time and duties when given no deadline.