North Dakota Spills Went Unreported; State Testing Website
From ABC News
By James MacPherson
North Dakota, the nation’s No. 2 oil producer behind Texas, recorded nearly 300 oil pipeline spills in less than two years, state documents show. None was reported to the public, officials said.
According to records obtained by The Associated Press, the pipeline spills — many of them small — are among some 750 “oil field incidents” that have occurred since January 2012 without public notification.
“That’s news to us,” said Don Morrison, director of the Dakota Resource Council, an environmental-minded landowner group with more than 700 members in North Dakota.
Dennis Fewless, director of water quality for the state Health Department, said regulators are reviewing the state’s policies for when to publicly report such incidents after a massive spill was discovered last month in northwestern North Dakota by a wheat farmer. State and company officials kept it quiet for 11 days — and only said something after the AP asked about it.
Soon after the AP published its report Friday, the Health Department announced it is testing a website to publish information on all spills reported to the department.
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