Most gas and oil company administrators are involved with land management, and many factors go into lang management, from keeping track of land stakeholders to securing onshore and offshore locations.
While managing lands can be difficult, it’s also crucial for your company’s financial viability and longevity. Poor land management can result in your company having to void land leases due to regulatory issues that you could have easily avoided. To prevent such losses, make sure your company understands what land management is and how to manage its assets successfully.
Why is Land Management a Critical Component to the Upstream Value Chain?
The critical aspects of land management are tracking the use and development of your land’s resources. For oil and gas companies, iron-tight control can help you avoid being fined or having your land taken away by the Bureau of Land Management for not following proper regulations.
Your company’s ability to explore and produce depends greatly on sound land management. Managing lands properly ensures you understand your current land’s assets and your company’s current and future needs. Stakeholders will expect that your company manages its land assets expertly. Failure to do so can result in them withdrawing their investment from your company, leading you to lose a significant sum of money.
What Are the Administrators’ Duties?
As your company’s land management administrator, you have several responsibilities. Most importantly, your job is to manage and analyze your current leases. However, that also involves understanding the titles and mineral land rights associated with each lease.
Each lease will have different provisions and custom clauses depending on the land rights and titles attached to it. Be sure to understand how your company can use each land by studying the conditions spelled out in each land’s lease.
Most administrators will also need to maintain and understand the land management software their company use. You can use this software to track current land leases, manage land obligations, and suggest payments associated with each land.
The Details of Leasing Land
Understanding the Bureau of Land Management’s rules and regulations will help you during land planning; while a land lease may seem like a deal, there’s a chance that the laws associated with that land will cost your company more in the long run.
Many companies find themselves the owners of lands subject to strict laws and regulations. However, you can easily avoid this situation by taking some extra time in the land planning process to determine if the land in question is worth leasing.
Because land laws can vary by state, make sure you brush up on the regulations associated with the state your land resides in before taking the lease. In particular, gas and oil companies are subject to stricter monitoring and regulations since they will most likely be using the land in ways that can disrupt or impact the surrounding environment.
For instance, when building a new gas well, local regulators will analyze the anticipated environmental impact your well will have in the future. Other laws, such as the Endangered Species Act and Clean Water Act, could also affect your ability to lease land or result in more expensive land leases.
Invest in a High-Quality Management Software
To help you better manage your land, make sure your software is up to snuff with your company’s needs. Every good management software will offer a few key features. Be sure your software provides acreage reporting, lease summaries, and land administration. These features will save you time and help you organize important documents.
Other much-needed features include GIS mapping, obligation management and electronic calendaring, payment processing, and lease bonus reporting. Software with these features help you locate and manage lands while also ensuring that you’re following the land usage and regulations you’re required to for each land.
You May Need a Consulting Service
If you’re still deciding which software works best for your company, consider hiring a consultant’s services. Many agencies specialize in helping administrators take the fullest advantage of their software. While a consultant will be an added upfront cost, the investment can save your company time and money down the road.
Optimizing Your Land Management
Land management is a complex process that involves high-stake decisions. Understanding best practices for land management and how laws and regulations affect your leases will help you make informed and calculated decisions. However, exploring software and consulting options for land management for oil and gas companies will ensure you’re making the most profit possible while still following the use regulations spelled out in each of your land contracts.