The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
7 Hospitalized After Pipeline Explosions in Texas
Seven people were injured and hospitalized after a series of natural gas pipeline explosions in Midland County, Texas on Wednesday, according to local media.
The operator of the pipeline in question is unknown at this time, Midland public information officer Elana Ladd said to the Midland Reporter-Telegram. She added that fire department personnel are allowing the remaining gas to burn off.
The incident occurred on a rural road, FM 1379. KWES reported that three total explosions occurred—the first at 11:30 a.m. After that fire was suppressed, a second and third explosion followed at 12:30 p.m. The cause is not yet known.
"They had a leak on the pipeline. Fire department responded to it. Midland Fire Department and Greenwood Fire Department. And while they were down there, they were fighting some grass fires along with it. Apparently something happened to the pipeline. We don't know what it is yet, because we can't get in there to look at it. But they had a failure within the pipeline itself and the first one exploded. Then they had two other small explosions, one medium and one small," Midland Fire Marshall Dale Little told CBS 7.
Initial reports said five people were injured from the explosions. Updated reports increased the number of injured people to seven. The seven were taken to the hospital with critical injuries, four with burns, according to CBS 7. One firefighter with the Greenwood Fire Department and another firefighter with Midland Fire Department were among the victims.
The Midland Reporter-Telegram posted an eye-witness' video footage of the fire that broke out.
Kinder Morgan told Reuters it isolated a portion of its El Paso Natural Gas Pipeline after being alerted of the fire near the line. One of its employees was injured and hospitalized, spokeswoman Sara Hughes said.
"There was a third-party pipeline involved that also experienced a failure, and preliminary indications are that the third-party line failure occurred before the EPNG line failure," Hughes told Reuters in an email.
She said the company is investigating the incident and evaluating any damages, adding that regulatory agencies and customers have been notified.
As EcoWatch wrote previously, production in the Permian shale field in western Texas has been booming. According IEA's Oil 2018 forecast, global oil production capacity is expected to grow by 6.4 million barrels a day (mb/d) to reach 107 mb/d by 2023. Much of that growth is led by the U.S. due to oil produced from fracking the Permian, where output is expected to double by 2023.
However, there is currently not enough pipeline capacity to retrieve Permian fuels, and that bottleneck has opened up opportunities for more pipeline development in the region. In June, Kinder Morgan's Texas subsidiary announced a $2 billion Permian pipeline to transport natural gas. Earlier that month, ExxonMobil and Plains All American Pipeline announced a joint pursuit to construct a multi-billion dollar pipeline that will transport more than 1 million barrels of crude oil and condensate per day from the basin to the Texas Gulf Coast.
Motley Fool also reported that Epic Midstream has proposed a 440,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) crude oil pipeline in the region, and so has Magellan Midstream Partners, which has proposed a 600,000 bpd pipeline.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Emily Deanne
Shower shoes? Check. Extra-long sheets? Yep. Energy efficiency checklist? No worries — we've got you covered there. If you're one of the nation's 12.1 million full-time undergraduate college students, you no doubt have a lot to keep in mind as you head off to school. If you're reading this, climate change is probably one of them, and with one-third of students choosing to live on campus, dorm life can have a big impact on the health of our planet. In fact, the annual energy use of one typical dormitory room can generate as much greenhouse gas pollution as the tailpipe emissions of a car driven more than 156,000 miles.
By Lorraine Chow
Kokia drynarioides is a small but significant flowering tree endemic to Hawaii's dry forests. Native Hawaiians used its large, scarlet flowers to make lei. Its sap was used as dye for ropes and nets. Its bark was used medicinally to treat thrush.
States that invest heavily in renewable energy will generate billions of dollars in health benefits in the next decade instead of spending billions to take care of people getting sick from air pollution caused by burning fossil fuels, according to a new study from MIT and reported on by The Verge.
Hawaii's Kilauea volcano could be gearing up for an eruption after a pond of water was discovered inside its summit crater for the first time in recorded history, according to the AP.
By Kristin Ohlson
From where I stand inside the South Dakota cornfield I was visiting with entomologist and former USDA scientist Jonathan Lundgren, all the human-inflicted traumas to Earth seem far away. It isn't just that the corn is as high as an elephant's eye — are people singing that song again? — but that the field burgeons and buzzes and chirps with all sorts of other life, too.
Humanity faced its hottest month in at least 140 years in July, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said on Thursday. The finding confirms similar analysis provided by its EU counterparts.
By Hans Nicholas Jong
Indonesia's president has made permanent a temporary moratorium on forest-clearing permits for plantations and logging.
It's a policy the government says has proven effective in curtailing deforestation, but whose apparent gains have been criticized by environmental activists as mere "propaganda."