EnviroVaults are used in many applications, primarily upstream oil and gas production. Advantages include;

  • Reduced Servicing Costs
  • Superior Environmental Stewardship
  • Improved Operational Safety and Efficiency
  • Improved Security
  • Reduced Delivery and Transportation Costs

EnviroVault Raises the Standard

EnviroVault's internal chamber concept has revolutionized tank design. The EnviroVault system is recognized by producers, manufacturers and engineers as providing the highest level of environmental and personnel proctection, security, and cost effectiveness available today.

EnviroVault Equipped Tanks are:

  • The SAFEST: Operators are kept off ladders and out of hazardous confined spaces areas such as external shacks.
  • The MOST ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY: It Reduces or eliminates soil contamination and associated soil clean up costs!
  • The MOST COST EFFECTIVE: Independent oil company testing has shown that operational savings pay for the EnviroVault in just two years!


EnviroVault can be installed in tanks made of steel, fiberglass or plastic for any fluid. The EnviroVault was originally developed with the needs of the demanding heavy oil industry. EnviroVault advantages can be expanded to meet specific tank storage requirements. Current EnviroVault designs are available in "weld in" or "bolt in" models that allow for easy on site installations.

Contact EnviroVault today with your containment needs. We will be happy to provide you with a custom design.


Following are a list of different problems likely to be encountered over the lifetime of the average tank and the related costs involved. These costs were based on a field located relatively close to a service centre where equipment and manpower are readily available. Costs in more remote locations will run much higher. Sources used to estimate the following cost estimates are local service companies experienced in: spill clean ups, valve changes, fire tube repair and replacement, vacuum and steam truck companies as well as input from local oil company representatives. Rates shown within this outline are based on rates in effect as of May 2010. Costs shown are averages. Updated May 2010.

Steamer: $95/hr
Tandem Vacuum: $110/hr
Pressure Truck: $110/hr
Tridem Trailer: $150/hr
Tri Axle: $160/hr

Click below to view different cost saving scenarios:

Valve Damage and Replacement Costs
Foam Over / Overfill
Steam Truck to Thaw Valve
Insulating 4 Inch Valves
Fire Tube Failure
Valve Freezes and Cracks
Frozen or Sanded Off Sample Line Resulting in Spill
Vandalism and Theft

Scenario 1 a): Valve damage and replacement costs

A vacuum truck is dispatched to the lease to pull a load of water off the 3" valve but upon arrival they find the valve to be frozen. A pipe wrench is used on the valve for extra leverage which results in a broken valve.

Valve: $450 $450
Crew - change out: $250 $400
Vac Truck: $200 $300
Misc Extras: N/A $150
Total w/ misc extras $900 $1300

Average Total: $1100

EnviroVault® Solution:

An option for catalytic heat provides freeze protection for valves and prevents lost production. In a heavy oil application, the latent heat from the process fluid keeps the valves from freezing.

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Scenario 1 b): Steam truck to thaw valve

The truck driver calls into dispatch to advise them of the frozen valve and request further instruction. Dispatch takes 10 - 15 minutes tracking down the operator and lining up alternate work for the truck. Dispatch may be advised to line up a steamer to go out and thaw the valve. If a steamer is available right away it may take 1 - 2 hours for it to travel to location, thaw the valve and return to base.

Truck travel and wait time (0.75 - 1 hr): $130 $330
Travel to location, thaw and back (1-2 hrs): $160 $320
Total: $290 $650

Average Total: $470

EnviroVault® Solution:

An option for catalytic heat provides freeze protection for valves and prevents lost production. In a heavy oil application, the latent heat from the process fluid keeps the valves from freezing.

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Scenario 2 a): Fire tube failure

The sample taps mounted on the exterior of the tank are frozen so the operator is unable to ascertain sand height in the tank. The sand builds up over the fire tube and causes a fire tube failure. Fires have resulted as the oil enters the broken fire tube, in some cases destroying the entire tank. A picker truck is needed to remove the stack, then return and reinstall it. If sand is built up enough on the fire tube, the tank must be emptied and the door pulled so a crew can enter and use a jackhammer to remove the build up. A steamer is then called to clean up the damaged tube prior to repair and often to clean the mess made on the tank during the change out.

Picker truck ($130/hr crew labour for 3hrs): $390 $390
Labour and equip to remove/install fire tube: $500 $600
Jackhammer plus compressor to remove sand: $1000 $1000
Steamer (1-2hrs) $95 $190
Fire tube repaired or replaced: $1000 $2500
Total: $3000 $4700

Average Total: $3900

If tank is a total loss due to fire: $25,000 $40,000
Plus spill clean up and disposal of waste: $500 $5000
Total: $30,000 $45,000

Average Total: $37,500

Additional Info:

The ThermoVault® provides an alternative to heating with a fire tube by using multiple catalytic heaters. Catalytic heaters are sized to the energy requirement and provide freeze protection. Testing is planned during the summer of 2010 to determine if catalytic heat is more efficient, uses less fuel gas, has cleaner emissions, and can heat the tank fluid to a desired temperature. The ThermoVault will increase safety, efficiency and productivity by eliminating the possibility of fire tube failures.

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Scenario 2 b): Frozen or sanded off sample line resulting in spill

Operator attempts to take a sample but upon opening the tap they see that the fluid is barely moving. Operator decides to do other duties while the frozen plug works itself free. Operator forgets, drives away and eventually the plug does come free resulting in a spill.

Total equipment and labour to clean spill: $300 $Thousands

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Scenario 2 c): Foam over/overfill

Steamer, manbasket and chemical: $500 $2000
Equipment and labour for ground clean up: $500 $1500
Disposal of waste ($20-$100/m3) $600 $3000
Total: $1600 $6500

Average Total: $4100

EnviroVault® Solution:

Samples are taken more on the inside of the tank as opposed to the side of the tank wall with EnviroVault sample lines. 180 degree elbows are installed, thereby substantially reducing the potential for sanded off lines. This solution also provides enhanced operator safety so they don't have to climb a ladder to take samples. This solution eliminates the possibility of a spill and clean up costs associated.


If the scenario 2 b) and 2 c) were to take place in a group tank setting, the clean-up costs could easily triple.

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Scenario 3: Insulating 4 inch valves (fibreglass or urethane foam)

Initial cost to insulate valves with fibreglass. Insulation eventually gets soaked or breaks down offering little insulating value. Every 2 years it must be removed and replaced with the old insulation disposed of at a landfill. Some valves are reinsulated every year.

Fibreglass (includes 1-2 hrs labour @ $75/hr): $125 $200
Landfill disposal: $75 $100
Total: $200 $300

Average Total: $250

Cost to insulate four valves with urethane foam.

Urethane foam ($75 - $100 per valve): $300 $400

Average Total: $350

EnviroVault Solution:

There is still the possibility of valves freezing even when insulated. Valves inside of an EnviroVault are protected against freezing with the option of catalytic heat.

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Scenario 4: Valve freezes and cracks

Cost and installation of a new valve. A vacuum truck might have to pull fluid down to enable valve change (if unable to utilize valve change plug). If the tank has to be fully emptied to facilitate the valve change, the fluid handling costs could be a lot higher.

New 4" valve: $300 $500
Labour to replace (including travel): $200 $300
Vacuum truck: $200 $300
Total: $700 $1100

Average Total: $900

EnviroVault® Solution:

Operators advise that the valve life is being extended by at least 2 - 3 times. An average valve life on a tank without an EnviroVault is 6 to 8 months on high use valves. Very few valve changes reported on EnviroVault equipped tanks.

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Scenario 5: Vandalism and Theft

Vandalism and theft are unpleasant realities. Numerous incidents of vandalism have cost producers hundreds of thousands of dollars, likely more. The costs due to theft are unknown.

EnviroVault® Solution:

All sample taps, HLSD switches, valves and even sales oil valves can be installed inside an EnviroVault which can be locked. These incidents can be greatly reduced or eliminated.

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Operator Safety and Productivity:

"Slip and fall" accidents are a major cause of lost time accidents in the oil industry. All valves in the EnviroVault are at ground level, eliminating the need to climb an icy ladder to get a sample while hanging on precariously with one hand. "Strain" injuries from opening and closing frozen valves are also eliminated.

Keeping personnel off the ladders was a main concern expressed by operators:

With all valves kept warm and easily accessible, operators can keep much more accurate track of fluid and sand levels, in much less time. This enables them to book fluid and sand handling services more accurately, avoids time consuming delays for both themselves and truckers dealing with frozen valves. Operators spend much less time handling sample fluid and arranging cleanup on and around tanks. The EnviroVault has proven to lower operating costs per well. Operators spend more time working on other areas of the lease such as maintenance of skid and wellhead drive, and spending more time looking into production optimization. It's no secret, or surprise, that an operator given the best tools to do his job is not only much more efficient, they're much happier. The general consensus of the operators is that; "next to the pickup truck they drive, the EnviroVault is the most valuable tool they have."

Public Image, Board Approval, and Insurance Reduction:

At a time when land owners and government regulations are becoming more stringent, an investment of this kind goes a long way to showing real commitment to environmental issues. There is also a potential reduction in insurance premiums on leases equipped with systems such as the EnviroVault, as spills, accidental or intentional and environmental damage are obviously reduced.


As you can see, there are numerous reasons to incorporate EnviroVault. One stop on an EnviroVault equipped location on a cold winters day will provide all the evidence required to see that it is, in fact, a necessary and vital tool for today's oil industry. It is very difficult to conclude an actual dollar saving using the scenarios within, but current user estimates of a payout on the EnviroVault consistently come in at between one and two years, easily. That being the case, over the course of the tanks life, not only is the EnviroVault paid for, the entire tank has been paid for. EnviroVaults can be used in almost all aboveground tank applications. You have the ability to have the vaults installed in your new tanks or retrofit them into your existing tanks. It is up to the end user what EnviroVault size they want, or what equipment they want installed inside (valves, sample taps, electronic level controls, etc). Operator safety, heated valves, accurate samples year round, contained mess, easy clean out, no insulating, all in a lockable area preventing theft and vandalism are a part of that tank for its lifetime. The EnviroVault is flush mounted and doesn't affect tank cradle positioning.

If you have any questions, concerns or additional input, please call (403) 263-4433 or visit our website at

Please Contact Us for more details on any of our cost savings scenarios.