The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Interstate Pipeline Spills 10,000 Gallons of Crude Oil Into Ohio Nature Preserve
About 240 barrels of crude oil—roughly 10,000 gallons—leaked from a Sunoco pipeline this week, contaminating a large area in the Oak Glen Nature Preserve, near Cincinnati, OH.
Local, state and federal officials reported to the scene Monday evening and contained the leak by about 5 a.m. Tuesday, Cincinnati's WCPO reported. The cause remains under investigation and cleanup could take two weeks.
Sunoco Logistics Partners owns most of the Mid-Valley Pipeline Co. pipeline, which extends 1,000 miles from Michigan to Texas. No injuries were reported after the leak, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) spokeswoman Heather Lauer said the crude oil was pooled in a marshland area about the size of a football field, as of Wednesday morning. There are natural barriers that the agency hopes will prevent it from seeping into the Great Miami River, which is just 150 meters away.
While some authorities say the leak is unlikely to affect drinking water in the area, the EPA is investigating and trying to ensure that the underground pipe's oil has not leaked into the ground water supply. In addition to the Great Miami River, water treatment plants are nearby, upstream in Fairfield, OH and upstream on the Ohio River.
"We do have a drinking well used for drinking on this side of the road that will be sampled in the near future, in addition, the health department has identified up to 70 more locations that will be looking into," the EPA's Steve Renninger told WCPO.
The first cleanup phase will take about a week or so, officials estimated. That includes recovering crude oil and contaminated land using powerful vacuum cleaners and large machinery.
"[An oil spill] could definitely have been worse later in the spring when all of our wildlife is coming out of hibernation," Bob Mason, stewardship manager with Great Parks, said. "Plus now the ground is still hard, still somewhat frozen, so that helps."
The pipeline carries crude oil to refineries in Ohio and Oregon. Inspectors last checked it in 2011. A system-wide inspection of the 1,119-mile-long pipeline five years ago resulted in a $48,700 fine for Sunoco, which did not address corrosion problems in the pipeline.
According to the Enquirer, Gary M. Broughton placed the initial 911 call after taking in a "fuel, oily smell." He got out of his car and saw oil spreading across a pond.
"It's absolutely terrible," Broughton told the 911 dispatcher.
"It made me sick when I saw it."
Visit EcoWatch’s PIPELINES page for more related news on this topic.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
'This Should Scare the Hell Out of You': Photo of Greenland Sled Dog Teams Walking on Melted Water Goes Viral
By Jon Queally
In yet the latest shocking image depicting just how fast the world's natural systems are changing due to the global climate emergency, a photograph showing a vast expanse of melted Arctic ice in Greenland — one in which a pair of sled dog teams appear to be walking on water — has gone viral.
By Tia Schwab
It has been almost a year since Hurricane Florence slammed the Carolinas, dumping a record 30 inches of rainfall in some parts of the states. At least 52 people died, and property and economic losses reached $24 billion, with nearly $17 billion in North Carolina alone. Flood waters also killed an estimated 3.5 million chickens and 5,500 hogs.
'Huge Victory' for Grassroots Climate Campaigners as NY Lawmakers Reach Deal on Sweeping Climate Legislation
By Julia Conley
Grassroots climate campaigners in New York applauded on Monday after state lawmakers reached a deal on sweeping climate legislation, paving the way for the passage of what could be some of the country's most ambitious environmental reforms.
Tens of Thousands Flee Extreme Heatwave in India as Temperatures Topping 120°F Kill Dozens Across Country
By Julia Conley
Nearly 50 people died on Saturday in one Indian state as record-breaking heatwaves across the country have caused an increasingly desperate situation.
By Will J. Grant
In an ideal world, people would look at issues with a clear focus only on the facts. But in the real world, we know that doesn't happen often.
People often look at issues through the prism of their own particular political identity — and have probably always done so.
Spaghetti with plastic sauce? That's what you might be eating if you pour one of three flavors of Ragú sauce over your pasta.
Mizkan America, the food company that owns Ragú, announced Saturday that it was voluntarily recalling some Chunky Tomato Garlic & Onion, Old World Style Traditional and Old World Style Meat sauces because they might be contaminated with plastic fragments, The Today Show reported.