North Slope, Alaska

The Project
The Nanushuk Project, a joint venture between Spanish oil company Repsol and Denver-based Armstrong Oil and Gas, is an oil discovery on Alaska’s North Slope that could be the state’s biggest in years. To ensure transparency and public accessibility during its environmental review, the project’s consultants at DOWL hired SmartComment to help them solicit and manage public comments related to the project’s multi-year Environmental Impact Report (EIR), from pre-scoping all the way through to the final document.

What We Did

  • Created a website for the project on which members of the public can submit electronic comments
  • Designed a secure, custom database to store all public comments. Because of the project’s isolated surroundings, we designed the database to store all traditional comment forms, such as letters, comment card submissions, public hearing transcripts, and more
  • Customized a comment topic list with consultants to help classify comments as they’re submitted. Our 24-7 support efforts allowed us to make changes or additions to this list as comments came in, ensuring the most accurate picture of the comments’ sentiments make it into the final report
  • Organized staff at DOWL into comment response teams that will allow comments to flow seamlessly from initial response, into QA/QC, and eventually on to final approval by the project’s lead agency, The Army Corps of Engineers
  • Trained and assisted the project team as they digitally bracketed submissions from the public into individual comments using our unique SmartBracket™ tool. Using this feature, comments go from “unclassified” to matching topics specified by the project team, allowing them a full and comprehensive view of the public input related to the project

The Results
During the pre-scoping and DEIS phase of Nanushuk’s environmental review, the project team recieved hundereds of comments, which they digitally classified into individual topic areas as they came in. This efficiency allows consultants and staff to have a real-time picture of the populations and sentiments regarding the project so they can adapt plans accordingly or provide additional outreach.

What The Client Said
“I’ve been looking for an easy to use comment analysis tool for years. SmartComment provides the database capabilities I need and the support has been outstanding!”
Maryellen Tuttell, Senior Project Manager, DOWL