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article imageKeystone Pipeline spill comes on eve of decision on Keystone XL

By Karen Graham     Nov 17, 2017 in Business
Amherst - After a drop in pressure was detected in its operating system in South Dakota, the Keystone Pipeline, operated by TransCanada, was shut down at 6:00 a.m. Thursday morning CST.
According to a statement by TransCanada, "The estimated volume of the leak is approximately 5,000 barrels. The section of pipe along a right-of-way approximately 35 miles (56 kilometers) south of the Ludden pump station in Marshall County, South Dakota was completely isolated within 15 minutes and emergency response procedures were activated."
The 4,324 kilometer (2,687 miles) pipeline runs from Hardesty, Alberta, to Cushing, Oklahoma, and Wood River/Patoka, Illinois. Amherst is about 200 miles north of Sioux Falls and about 25 miles from the state's border with North Dakota. TransCanada expects the pipeline to stay shut down as they respond to the leak, reports the Bismarck Tribune.
The Keystone pipeline has been given  conditional approval  to restart the pipeline on Saturday  Apr...
The Keystone pipeline has been given "conditional approval" to restart the pipeline on Saturday, April 9.
Keystone XL
Brian Walsh, an environmental scientist manager at the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources, said that while TransCanada says they were aware of the leak early on Thursday morning, his agency wasn't alerted until about 10:30 a.m. CST. "There is a time lag there and I expect that that will be some of the questions we need to answer over the coming months," Walsh said.
Keystone XL Pipeline decision in question
The latest oil leak in the Keystone Pipeline is much larger than last year's April 2016 oil leak of about 16,800 gallons of crude oil. That leak took two months to clean up. One thing is very clear, though - This latest leak does not bode well for TransCanada's Keystone XL Pipeline.
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TransCanada
A decision is supposed to be made on the pipeline November 20. If the Nebraska Public Service Commission approves the Keystone XL, the pipeline will run from Hardesty, Alberta to Steele City, Nebraska. "We are getting a painful reminder of why no one wants a pipeline over their water supply," said Greenpeace campaigner Mike Hudema.
Opponents of the Keystone XL Pipeline say the line would pass through the Sandhills, an ecologically sensitive region of grass-covered sand dunes, and would cross the land of farmers and ranchers who don't want it.
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