Tag Archives: spill

Halliburton Destroys Gulf Spill Evidence, Gets Slap on Wrist

26 Jul
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Tim Probert (r.) of Halliburton is sworn in along with officials from BP and Transocean before May 11 Senate hearings on the Gulf oil spill. Tim Sloan/AFP/Newscom

by Rabb!t / Earth First! Newswire

The 2010 BP Oil Spill is considered the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry. It spilled approximately 210,000,000 US gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, and the initial explosion, caused by faulty cementing around the injection well, killed 11 workers.

During an internal probe into this cementing after the blowout, Halliburton ordered workers to destroy computer simulations relating to safety measures. The U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday that Halliburton has agreed to plead guilty to the destruction of this evidence.

This charge—knowingly destroying evidence during a government investigation in an attempt to cover up the cause of 11 human deaths and one of the largest disasters in the country’s history—is considered a “misdemeanor” charge. Halliburton is required to pay a $200,000 fine.

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Trans Mountain Pipeline Shut Down After Second Leak In One Month

27 Jun

Canadian Press

HOPE, B.C. — Another leak has been detected along Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline which crosses southern British Columbia carrying petroleum products from Alberta.

Kinder Morgan spokesman Andy Galarnyk confirms the line has been shut down as a precaution after a company crew noticed a problem in the Hope area, about 150 kilometres east of Vancouver.

Galarnyk says regulatory agencies and local authorities have been notified and the company is following the same procedures used on June 12 when a small leak occurred near Merritt, about 120 kilometres north of Hope.

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2.5 Million Gallons of Toxic Waste Spill in Northern Alberta

13 Jun

by Nathan Vanderklippe / The Globe And Mail

An Apache Canada drilling rig in the Ladyfern region of B.C. (Apache Canada)

An Apache Canada drilling rig in the Ladyfern region of B.C.
(Apache Canada)

The substance is the inky black colour of oil, and the treetops are brown. Across a broad expanse of northern Alberta muskeg, the landscape is dead. It has been poisoned by a huge spill of 9.5 million litres of toxic waste from an oil and gas operation in northern Alberta, the third major leak in a region whose residents are now questioning whether enough is being done to maintain aging energy infrastructure.

The spill was first spotted on June 1. But not until Wednesday did Houston-based Apache Corp. release estimates of its size, which exceeds all of the major recent spills in North America. It comes amid heightened sensitivity about pipeline safety, as the industry faces broad public opposition to plans for a series of major new oil export pipelines to the U.S., British Columbia and eastern Canada.

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Exxon’s Pegasus Pipeline Spills Again

1 May

by Edward McAllister and Robert Gibbons, Cross Posted from South Bend Tribune:

Spilt oil from Exxon pipeline runs between homes in North Woods Subdivision in Mayflower, Ark in early April. More oil from the same pipeline also spilled Tuesday in a yard in Missouri. (Reuters)

Spilt oil from Exxon pipeline runs between homes in North Woods Subdivision in Mayflower, Ark in early April. More oil from the same pipeline also spilled Tuesday in a yard in Missouri. (Reuters)

Exxon Mobil Corps near 70-year-old Pegasus oil pipeline spilled a small amount of crude on Tuesday into a residential yard in Ripley County, Missouri, a month after the same pipe spewed thousands of barrels of crude in Arkansas.

A resident notified the company of the spill after spotting a patch of oil and dead vegetation seven miles south of Doniphan in the southeast of the state, Exxon and state officials said on Wednesday.

About one barrel of crude leaked and the cleanup is “close to completion”, an Exxon spokeswoman said.

Tuesday’s spill occurred 200 miles north of Mayflower, Arkansas, where about 5,000 barrels of crude spilled from the Pegasus pipe into a residential area on March 29, prompting a giant clean-up operation that is still ongoing.

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Leaks, Rats and Radioactivity: Fukushima’s Nuclear Cleanup Is Faltering

1 May

by Bryan Walsh, Cross Posted from Time:

JAPAN-DISASTER-ACCIDENT-NUCLEAR-ENERGY-IAEA

Honestly, if the consequences weren’t potentially so dire, the ongoing struggles to clean up the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in northern Japan would be the stuff of comedy. In March, an extended blackout disabled power to a vital cooling system for days. The cause: a rat that had apparently been chewing on cables in a switchboard. As if that’s not enough, another dead rat was found in the plant’s electrical works just a few weeks ago, which led to another blackout, albeit of a less important system. The dead rats were just the latest screwups in a series of screwups by Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), the owner of the Fukushima plant, that goes back to the day of March 11, 2011, when an earthquake and the resulting tsunami touched off a nuclear disaster that isn’t actually finished yet. I’m not sure things could be much worse if Wile E. Coyote were TEPCO’s CEO.

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Tar Sands Pipeline Oil Spill in Minnesota

25 Apr

Cross posted from Indigenous Environmental Network

by Marty Cobenais

The Enbridge pipeline in Viking, Minnesota

The Enbridge pipeline in Viking, Minnesota

Viking, MN – The small northern western Minnesota town of approximately 100 people was the site of the latest Alberta Canada tar sands pipeline oil spill.  Enbridge Energy made the initial report that 600 gallons (15 barrels) of oil was released at the Viking Station, from line 67.  This is also known as the Alberta Clipper pipeline, which was completed in 2011.  Enbridge is currently seeking permission to increase the amount of oil from 450,000 barrels to 570,000 barrels per day, but was added another application to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to increase the flow to the maximum of 880,000 barrels.  This is the same diameter of pipeline the TransCanada Keystone XL, 800,000 barrels per day, which is under great scrutiny in its Presidential Permit application.

An Enbridge official on the scene stated that the leak was detected by workers doing maintenance. The official said the workers smelled oil and upon inspection, they discovered the leak.  The leak was determined to be at a “Transmitter”.  The transmitter is the unit that measures the amount of pressure in the pipeline.  This leak was small enough to not signal the main terminal that there was a leak.  The transmitter is at the end of a 2-inch pipe that is screwed into the main pipeline. The Enbridge employee stated that the leak was in the threads.  He stated that it was Line 2 and not Line 67, but after further questions as to other parts he was unsure of what pipelines locations were. Continue reading

Third Major Oil Spill in a Week: Shell Pipeline Breaks in Texas

5 Apr


Thousands of gallons of oil have spilled from a pipeline in Texas, the third accident of its kind in only a week.

Shell Pipeline, a unit of Royal Dutch Shell Plc, shut down their West Columbia, Texas, pipeline last Friday after electronic calculations conducted by the US National Response Center showed that upwards of 700 barrels had been lost, amounting to almost 30,000 gallons of crude oil.

By Monday, Shell spokespeople said inspectors found “no evidence” of an oil leak, but days later it was revealed that a breach did occur. Representatives with the US Coast Guard confirmed to Dow Jones on Thursday that roughly 50 barrels of oil spilled from a pipe near Houston, Texas and entered a waterway that connects to the Gulf of Mexico.
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Exxon Refinery Spills Unknown Amount of Chemicals

5 Apr


As ExxonMobil’s week from hell continues after a spill of Canadian crude oil and questions on why the energy giant is exempt from contributing to a federal cleanup fund, it is now dealing with a fresh chemical leak at a refinery in Chalmette, Louisiana.

According to the New Orleans Times-Picayune, residents of the New Orleans suburb began reporting strong odor of “burning tires and oil” to the local Coast Guard on Wednesday.

The claims were soon connected to a report issued by the ExxonMobil refinery the same day.

Confusion remained, though, over the amounts and types of chemicals dumped as a result of a break in a pipeline connecting a drum used to store “liquid flare condensate” with a flare. At oil refineries, flares are gas combustion devices generally used to burn off flammable gas released by pressure relief valves. In this case, the spill itself was of the condensate water.

Once the refinery’s leak reached the threshold that would require it to be reported, ExxonMobil announced that it had released 100 pounds of hydrogen sulfide and 10 pounds of benzene, a volatile compound known to cause cancer.
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Groups Protest Tar Sands Oil on Spill Anniversary

27 Jul

Vacuum crews work to remove tar sands oil near the spill site, August 2, 2010. (Photo courtesy U.S. EPA)

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — On the second anniversary of the costliest onshore oil spill in U.S. history, environmental groups held rallies in several states Wednesday to raise concerns about transporting tar sands oil in underground pipelines.

Demonstrators walked along the riverfront in Battle Creek, near the southwestern Michigan site where a pipeline ruptured in 2010 and spewed hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil into the Kalamazoo River. Others staged “We Are the Kalamazoo” events in other states to rally opposition to new and expanded pipelines Continue reading

Niger Delta villagers go to the Hague to fight against oil giant Shell

6 Aug

Oil spill on the shores of the Niger Delta swamps of Bodo, a village in Niger's oil-producing Ogoniland. Photograph: Pius Utomi Ekpei/AFP/Getty Images

By John Vidal

Excerpts below. To read full article go to source: Cross-posted from here

Goi is now a dead village. The two fish ponds, bakery and chicken farm that used to be the pride and joy of its chief deacon, Barrisa Tete Dooh, lie abandoned, covered in a thick black layer. The village’s fishing creek is contaminated; the school has been looted; the mangrove forests are coated in bitumen and everyone has left, refugees from a place blighted by the exploitation of the region’s most valuable asset: crude oil.

Last Thursday, a long-awaited and comprehensive UN study exposed the full horror of the pollution that the production of oil has brought to Ogoniland over the last 50 years.

The UN report showed that oil companies and the Nigerian government had not just failed to meet their own standards, but that the process of investigation, reporting and clean-up was deeply flawed in favour of the firms and against the victims. Spills in the US are responded to in minutes; in the Niger delta, which suffers more pollution each year than the Gulf of Mexico, it can take companies weeks or more.

Goi, 40 miles from Port Harcourt, is a typical case. Just a few miles from where Shell first found oil in Ogoniland in 1958, it is only 20 miles from Bane, the ancestral home of Ogoni writer and leader Ken Saro-Wiwa. People from Goi joined the great Ogoni protest march of 1994, when one in three people from the small kingdom of 900,000 rose peacefully against the company, preventing it from working any of its 30 wells in the area. Two years later, Saro-Wiwa and eight Ogoni leaders were tried on a fabricated murder charge and executed.

On Wednesday, Shell formally accepted responsibility in British law for two significant spills in nearby Bodo. Those were rare victories. More than 1,000 court cases have been taken against Shell for pollution in the last 30 years, but almost all are rejected, settled for a few dollars or remain mired in the legal system for years. Even when the courts rule against the company and fine it millions, it is possible for it to appeal, with legal delays draining communities of cash. One case against Shell taken by people in Goi is still in the courts after 14 years.

For full article go here