Headlines this week included the mention of a massive oil leak from the Keystone pipeline, but the story is not what the XL pipeline seems to have been so hotly debated during the Obama administration. The 383,000-gallon oil spill occurred in North Dakota, about 50 miles from the Canadian border, the New York Times reported. The spill covered about half an acre of wetland, which was not near any house and was not a source of drinking water.
Karl Rockeman, Director of Water Quality at North Dakota's Department of Environmental Quality, told the Times, "It's one of the major pollutions in the state," but stressed that the pollution would not affect local residents.
TC Energy released an update on its efforts to eliminate pollution: "The approximate size of the affected area is 2,500 yd2 or less than half the size of a soccer field.
"We continue to inform regulators and local stakeholders about our progress. We have provided an initial estimate that 9,120 barrels of oil were released; About half the size of an Olympic swimming pool, "the company said on October 31." Our crews continue to focus on oil production as they plan to repair the pipeline. We will provide updates as they become available.
It is still unclear what causes are responsible for the release. An internal investigation is under way.
Of course, activists who opposed the Keystone XL pipeline pledged a victory round after the disaster was announced. Catherine Collentine, deputy director of the Sierra Club, told the Times that oil spills are a guarantee.
"We do not know yet how big the damage caused by the recent tar sands, but we know that this is not the first time this pipeline has spilled toxic tar sands, and it will not last time, "she told the sales office. "We've always said that it's not about whether a pipeline has expired, but rather when and again TC Energy is advocating for us."
President Barack Obama contested an expansion of the Keystone pipeline in 2015 President Donald Trump allowed Start of construction as soon as he took office. As the Times reported, since its startup in 2010, the main pipeline has been in operation multiple times:
This is the second major incident for the pipeline system in the past two years. In 2017, a spill covered a stretch of grass in South Dakota with more than 407,000 gallons of spilled Canadian crude oil, which, according to the company, was nearly twice what it was originally thought. The pipeline leaked around 16,000 gallons of oil in North Dakota in 2011 and South Dakota in 2016.
In addition, another oil spill 300 miles west of Edinburgh, North Dakota, resulted in nearly 84,400 gallons of crude oil entering the pipeline. The pipeline involved was operated by New Horizon Resources and was not part of the Keystone pipeline.