Another reason to dislike the Federal government shutdown– unreported oil spills

oil spill An estimated 20,600 barrels of crude oil has spilled in North Dakota– one of the biggest spills in recent years. Although a local farmer discovered the spill on September 29, the National Response Center, normally posting reports of such spills on its website within 24 hours, did not post the report of the spill to its website until October 8th. The reason: the shutdown.

On the bright side, the day after the spill was reported, Tesoro Logistics LP, the owner of the gushing pipeline, sent a team in to mitigate the effects of the spill by burning accumulated oil and digging tenches around the site. See full article here.

However, although this was one of the largest spills in North Dakota, it was not the only one. Advancements in fracking technology have allowed companies to find black gold in North Dakota where it couldn’t be found before making North Dakota second, with Texas being the first, in United States oil production. However, as always what comes with fracking, not only is oil being spilled but so is the salt and chemical cocktail, waste brine. In 2011 alone, Propublica reports over 1000 oil and brine spills. See full report here. As fracking always occurs near major sources of water, one can only imagine what is getting into the North Dakota residents drinking water. This should be a clear wake up call to New York who is still lingering on the question of allowing horizontal hydraulic fracturing in the state. One can only hope.