Quantcast

Keystone Pipeline Spill Nearly 100 Times Bigger Than Originally Estimated

Energy

The oil spill that shut down a portion of the Keystone 1 pipeline in South Dakota last weekend is much bigger than initially estimated, TransCanada admitted on Thursday—almost 100 times bigger, in fact.

Originally estimated at 187 gallons, or approximately 4.5 barrels, TransCanada now reports that the Keystone 1 oil spill totals 18,600 gallons, or 400 barrels.

The fossil fuel company said the "potential volume" of the spill in Freeman, discovered by a passerby on Saturday, was about 18,600 gallons, or 400 barrels.

That estimate comes just days after TransCanada initially claimed the spill totaled about 187 gallons, or approximately 4.5 barrels.

"The fact that the damage is even bigger than first reported proves there is no such thing as a safe pipeline," Lindsay Meiman, communications coordinator for the climate group 350.org, told Common Dreams. "The only safe place for fossil fuels is in the ground."

Even at 187 gallons, the spill was already the largest since construction on the pipeline began in 2009, according to the Argus Leader. The new numbers make it one of the biggest leaks in South Dakota history.

Dallas Goldtooth, a Keystone opposition organizer with the Indigenous Environmental Network, told the Argus Leader on Thursday that the estimate should serve as a warning against new pipeline construction elsewhere and as an example of TransCanada's reckless legacy.

"This highlights the need for us to [not only] hold TransCanada accountable for their actions, but to use this as an example of the legitimate concerns that people have with future pipelines like Dakota Access," Goldtooth said, referring to a proposed pipeline that would transport crude oil across four Midwestern states.

TransCanada also said on Thursday it has yet to "pinpoint" the source of the leak.

Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, said in a statement earlier this week that this "disaster is a stark reminder that it's not a question if a pipeline will malfunction, but rather a question of when."

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Judge Denies Motions by Fossil Fuel Industry and Federal Government in Landmark Climate Change Case

Bill McKibben: It’s Time to Break Free From Fossil Fuels

Exxon and Shell Double Down to Defeat Climate Change Legislation

Big Oil Gearing Up to Battle Electric Vehicles

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter


mevans / E+ / Getty Images

The federal agency that manages the Great Barrier Reef issued an unprecedented statement that broke ranks with Australia's conservative government and called for urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to the Guardian.

Read More Show Less

A powerful earthquake struck near Athens, Greece and shook the capital city for 15 seconds on Friday, causing people to run into the streets to escape the threat of falling buildings, NBC News reported.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Golde Wallingford submitted this photo of "Pure Joy" to EcoWatch's first photo contest. Golde Wallingford

EcoWatch is pleased to announce our third photo contest!

Read More Show Less
U.S. government scientists concluded in a new report that last month was the hottest June on record. Angelo Juan Ramos / Flickr

By Jessica Corbett

As meteorologists warned Thursday that temperatures above 100°F are expected to impact two-thirds of the country this weekend, U.S. government scientists revealed that last month was the hottest June ever recorded — bolstering calls for radical global action on the climate emergency.

Read More Show Less
Rod Waddington / CC BY-SA 2.0

By John R. Platt

For years now conservationists have warned that many of Madagascar's iconic lemur species face the risk of extinction due to rampant deforestation, the illegal pet trade and the emerging market for the primates' meat.

Yes, people eat lemurs, and the reasons they do aren't exactly what we might expect.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Pixnio

By Rachael Link, MS, RD

Many types of flour are commonly available on the shelves of your local supermarket.

Read More Show Less
A visitor views a digital representation of the human genome at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Mario Tama / Getty Images

Genetics are significantly more responsible for driving autism spectrum disorders than maternal factors or environmental factors such as vaccines and chemicals, according to a massive new study involving more than 2 million people from five different countries.

Read More Show Less
Pixabay

By Emilie Karrick Surrusco

Across the globe, extreme weather is becoming the new normal.

Read More Show Less