Company responsible for O.C. oil spill gets permission to repair pipeline
A corporation that’s responsible for the worst oil spill in the history of the state is getting permission to repair the only part of the spill that’s still open.
The Associated Press:
A company overseeing the cleanup of the worst U.S. oil spill in history has been granted permission to repair a portion of the Keystone XL pipeline that remains shut after a spill that exposed and fouled the flow of crude oil to Texas.
The permits for the company to start working on the segment of the 1,172-mile pipeline in South Dakota are based on the state’s findings that the spill is not likely to cause significant damage or injury to people or property, state officials say.
The permits were issued by a state agency Monday and the company can move forward with its plans to repair the spill, but not without first applying for a permit to operate the portion of the pipeline that is shut.
BP was forced to halt the project last week after two of its oil tankers, the Deepwater Horizon and the Horizon, struck a submerged section of the pipeline when the Macondo Well was being operated by a subcontractor. No injuries have been reported, but the company has suspended the project since last week, pending the state’s review of the spill.
Officials have vowed that the pipeline will not be opened until the oil is removed from the ground. They estimate there are 300,000 gallons of oil spilled from the Macondo Well and it could take months to fully remove it from the ground.
State officials said they do not support the Keystone pipeline and have not determined if the permits were justified, according to the AP.
A spokeswoman for the company also issued a statement:
“BP has asked us to undertake repair and maintenance of the Keystone/BNSF mainline pipeline in South Dakota, and we respectfully request the agency reconsider its position. BP has a well-established track record of cleaning up spills and improving infrastructure, and we stand ready to complete the repairs on the Keystone XL Pipeline.”