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Research/Outreach Partner - 2015

College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

Anadarko Petroleum Corporation

Andarko Petroleum

A long-time contributor to research and outreach programs at the University of Wyoming has been selected to receive the Outstanding Research Partner Award from the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Anadarko Petroleum Corporation is one of the largest energy companies in Wyoming in terms of lease holdings and production and was the largest oil producer in the state in 2014.

The company is also the largest private landholder, with approximately 4.2 million acres of private mineral holdings and 1.2 million acres of surface holdings formerly associated with the Union Pacific land grant.

“Anadarko contributes greatly to natural resource issues and reclamation science in Wyoming, as evidenced by its being awarded the Wyoming  Game and Fish Department’s Landowner of the Year in 2007,” says Jeff Beck, an associate professor in the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management and nominator.

The company has helped fund several research studies through the college, including those by Beck.

The company is also the largest taxpayer in Wyoming – averaging almost $1 million per day in taxes and royalties to state and local governments since 2002. Beck notes the company has invested over $3.2 billion in capital investments in Wyoming since 2002.

The company’s commitment to research and outreach is spread across the UW campus. It includes:

  • $1.6 million to the School of Energy Resources to create the Anadarko Fellowship for Excellence in Energy Scholarship for graduate students
  • Being one of a consortium of energy companies funding the Mitigation Opportunity Mapping Tool through the Petroleum Association of Wyoming. The tool involves mapping disturbances within 2 miles of all sage-grouse leks in Wyoming. The maps include annual lek count data to assist in monitoring local sage-grouse population responses to disturbances and restoration activities.
  • Funding more than $1 million of research for the management of the Fortification Creek elk herd in northeast Wyoming as part of adaptive management with the state and the Bureau of Land Management.
  • That effort has included funding $129,000 as part of a study conducted by a Ph.D. student advised by Beck.

Since 2008, Beck and colleagues received $630,181 to conduct research on:

  • Sage-grouse (Atlantic Rim), elk (Fortification Creek), and pronghorn (Red Desert) response to environmental features and energy development structures characterizing their habitats;
  • Impacts of ravens on sage-grouse populations (Atlantic Rim and southwest Wyoming – collaboration with Utah State University); and
  • A new study that seeks to evaluate the influence of fall hunter-harvest on range-wide sage-grouse population trends.

Beck says these funds have supported one postdoc, two Ph.D. students, two master’s students, and led to nine journal articles published and several in various stages of revision or preparation.

Anadarko involvement across UW campus

Several University of Wyoming programs and departments have been involved with Anadarko’s research efforts.

They include the Department of Ecosystem Science and Management and Wyoming Reclamation and Restoration Center (WRRC) in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, the Wyoming Geographic Information Science Center (WyGISC), and the Wyoming Natural Diversity Database.

WRRC and WyGISC are working with Anadarko and the Petroleum Association of Wyoming to develop the Mitigation Opportunity Mapping Tool to provide accessible information about habitat condition and sage grouse use of all leks in Wyoming.

Colleen Faber of Anadarko is participating in the vegetation task force with which the WRRC has been involved. The group is working to bring more consistency to reclamation monitoring methods used in Wyoming. Dennis Ellis, Anadarko’s government relations adviser for Wyoming, serves on the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Board of Advisers.


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College of Agriculture and Natural Resources

University of Wyoming

Department #3354

1000 E. University

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-4133

Fax: (307) 766-4030


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