Last light, Stone Steps © Robert Sommers 2023

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Big money always wins.

Presidente Trump has successfully strong armed the Army Corps of Engineers into granting final easement approval of the Dakota Access Pipeline so that rich private companies can ship their fossil fuels across public and private lands to overseas markets. The Corps is cancelling the further environmental review that they had requested during the last administration. Trump and his fellow Republicans are dead serious about reversing all this clean energy crap and getting back to something that will put more money in their pockets.
In documents filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, as part of an ongoing federal environmental review of the controversial pipeline, Army officials indicated that they were terminating a plan to prepare an environmental-impact statement on how the pipeline would affect land and water along its 1,170-mile route.
Republican Senator and pipeline proponent John Hoeven of North Dakota issued a statement today, part of which I reprint:
“Today, the Army Corps of Engineers announced that it has finished its review of the Dakota Access Pipeline project and intends to grant an easement no earlier than tomorrow afternoon. The easement will enable the company to complete the project. New energy infrastructure, like the Dakota Access Pipeline, is being built with the latest safeguards and technology.
I was wondering about the latest safeguards and technology part. Here is a list of pipeline failures in the current century, from Wikipedia. It's way too long to copy so why don't I just go with the last and current year, should be the super or extra latest technology, right? Not real comforting, if you ask me.


On January 2, 3 people were injured, one seriously, one home destroyed, and 50 homes were damaged in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, when a leak gas from a gas main entered a home. Preliminary results indicate that a leak occurred at a weld seam on the gas main. Later, Oklahoma regulators filed a complaint over the failure with Oklahoma Natural Gas. The complaint alleged the utility failed to properly inspect its system following eight previous leak failures in the neighborhood going back to 1983.
On January 9, a 30-inch Atmos Energy gas transmission pipeline exploded and burned in Robertson County, Texas. 4 families nearby were evacuated.
On January 11, butane leaking from a pipeline storage facility, in Conway, Kansas, forced a closure of a nearby highway for a time.
On February 14, a 6-inch crude oil pipeline broke near Rozet, Wyoming, spilling about 1,500 gallons of crude oil into a creek bed.
On February 16, an explosion and fire occurred at a gas plant in Frio County, Texas. 2 employees at the plant were injured.
On February 24, a 10-inch propane pipeline exploded and burned, near Sulphur, Louisiana. There were no injuries. About 208,000 gallons of propane were burned. The cause was from manufacturing defects.
On March 11, about 30,000 gallons of gasoline spilled from a leaking plug on a pipeline, at a tank farm in Sioux City, Iowa.
On March 22, about 4,000 gallons of gasoline spilled from a 6-inch petroleum products pipeline in Harwood, North Dakota.
On April 2, the TransCanada Corporation Keystone Pipeline was observed by a local resident to be leaking, near Freeman, South Dakota. The cause was a crack in a girth weld, and amount of tar sands dilbit spill was about 16,800 gallons.
On April 12, a pipeline at a gas plant in Woodsboro, Texas exploded, killing 2 men, and injured another worker.
On April 17, a 10 petroleum products pipeline failed in Wabash County, Illinois, resulting in a sheen on the Wabash River. About 48,000 gallons of diesel fuel was spilled.
On April 29, a 30-inch Texas Eastern/Spectra Energy pipeline exploded, injuring one man, destroying his home and damaging several others. The incident was reported at 8:17 a.m., near the intersection of Routes 819 and 22 in Salem Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. Later, Spectra Energy Corp. announced plans to dig up and assess 263 miles of that pipeline, from Pennsylvania to New Jersey. Corrosion had been detected at the failed seam 4 years before the rupture.
On May 20, a Shell Oil Company pipeline leaked near Tracy, California, spilling about 21,000 gallons of crude oil.
On June 23, a Crimson Pipeline crude oil line leaked in Ventura County, California. Initial reports said the spill size was from 25,200 gallons to 29,000 gallons, but, later reports estimate 45,000 gallons of crude were spilled.
On July 6, a Plantation Pipeline line was noticed to be leaking in Goochland County, Virginia. The spill did not reach nearby waterways.
On August 12, contractors were working on one of the main lines in Sunoco Pipeline LP's Nederland, Texas terminal when crude oil burst through a plug that was supposed to hold the oil back in the pipeline and ignited. The contractors were knocked off the platform to the ground, suffering injuries from the fall and severe burns. 7 contractors were injured.
On September 5, a pipeline in Bay Long, Louisiana was hit by dredging operations, resulting in a spill of about 5,300 gallons of crude oil into the water.
On September 9, a Colonial Pipeline mainline leak was noticed by workers on another project, in Shelby County, Alabama. At least 252,000 gallons of gasoline leaked from line.
On September 10, a Sunoco pipeline ruptured near Sweetwater, Texas. About 33,000 gallons of crude oil were spilled. The pipeline was just over a year old.
On October 11, two Nicor Gas workers were injured, and two townhouse units destroyed in a massive fire and explosion, caused by a gas leak in Romeoville, Illinois.
On October 17, an 8-inch ammonia pipeline started leaking, near Tekamah, Nebraska. A farmer living nearby went to find the source of the ammonia, and was killed by entering the vapor cloud. About 50 people were evacuated from their homes.
On October 19, a contractor in Portland, Oregon hit a 1-inch gas pipeline during work. Within an hour, there were 2 explosions, injuring 8 people, destroying or damaging several buildings, and started a fire. Contractors claim a utility locate was done before work began.
On October 21, an 8-inch Sunoco pipeline ruptured in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, spilling about 55,000 gallons of gasoline into the Susquehanna River. The river was running high at the time.
On October 24, a pipeline ruptured on the Seaway Pipeline, in Cushing, Oklahoma, spraying the area with crude oil.
On October 31, a Colonial Pipeline mainline exploded and burned in Shelby County, Alabama, after accidentally being hit by a track hoe. One worker died at the scene, and 5 others were hospitalized, with one of those workers dying a month later. The explosion occurred approximately several miles from the 9 September 2016 breach.
On November 29, an Enterprise Products pipeline exploded in Platte County, Missouri, burning an ethane propane mixture. There were no evacuations or injuries.
On December 2, equipment failure in a Denbury Resources source water pipeline led to a leak of approximately 84,000 gallons of source water into Skull Creek, in Bowman County, North Dakota.
On December 5, a 6-inch Belle Fourche pipeline spilled 176,000 gallons of crude oil into Ash Coulee Creek in Billings County, North Dakota.


On January 7, a Colonial Pipeline stubline leaked gasoline into Shoal Creek, in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
On January 14, the Ozark Pipeline, an Enbridge division, spilled about 15,330 gallons of light oil at the Lawrence Pump Station, near Halltown, Missouri.
On January 16, a gas pipeline exploded and burned, near Spearman, Texas. There were no injuries.
On January 25, the Magellan pipeline leaked 138,600 gallons (3,300 barrels) of diesel fuel onto private agricultural land in Worth County, Iowa, near Hanlontown.
On January 30, a Texas Department of Transportation crew dug into the 30 inch Seaway Pipeline, near Blue Ridge, Texas, spraying crude oil across road. There were no injuries.
On January 31, a DCP pipeline exploded under a runway, at Panola County Airport-Sharpe Field in Texas. There were no injuries, but the airport will shut that runway down for an extended amount of time.

That is a lot of gas and Texas tea spilling around. I was reading about these sorts of gas and diesel spills. They can never be remediated, short of removing all the contaminated dirt involved. Land is usually toast forever.

RT America has their own top five list of American pipeline spills of last year. Not real reassuring. Not that anyone in our government really gives a shit.

In other news, the House voted Friday to overturn the Obama Administration's methane emission rules.

Lawmakers voted 221-191 to roll back the Interior Department rule that had clamped down on oil companies that burn off natural gas during drilling operations on public lands. Three Democrats voted in favor of repealing the rule, which was finalized in November, while 11 Republicans opposed repeal.

All you have to do is roll your window down next time you are near Midland, Texas and take a whiff and you will get a real good idea about how much these people love and value their planet.

Colorado Oil and Gas Toxic Release Tracker - 2015
New Mexico Toxic Release Tracker - 2014
Wyoming Gas Oil and Toxic Release Tracker - 2015

4900 spills in Colorado since 2000

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