by The Canadian Press, June 14, 2016, Calgary Herald
The Alberta Energy Regulator says a pipeline leak in northwestern Alberta has spilled 380,000 litres of light petroleum into a creek within five kilometres of a core grizzly bear protection area in the northwestern part of the province.
The provincial agency says cleanup personnel are at the site, about 65 kilometres northeast of Grand Cache, and that the pipeline has been shut down.
The regulator said Tuesday that no cause has been established and an investigation is underway. [Fox Creek World Record Frac Quakes compromising pipeline welds? Is anyone checking? 2012: leak Detection Sensors Miss Most Pipeline Spills ]
It says condensate, a liquid produced with natural gas, was visible as a sheen on the surface of the unnamed creek for about 4.5 kilometres below the leak. The creek flows into the Simonette River, but the AER said the sheen was not visible on the river. [Not yet anyways]
The regulator said in a news release it has issued an environmental protection order to producer ConocoPhillips Canada, which reported the spill last Thursday afternoon. [Why only report this now, 5 days later? Prevent ghastly photos like the Alberta Surface Rights Group took of the Plainsmidsteam sour crude pipeline spill into the Red Deer River, relied on for many for their drinking water?
The order directs the company to contain the release and prevent it from spreading, while controlling access, collecting water and soil samples and submitting a final report to the AER. [Emphasis added]
Pipeline leak fouls creek near grizzly bear protection area in northwestern Alberta, 380,000 litres of light petroleum spills into creek northeast of Grand Cache by The Canadian Press, June 14, 2016, CBC News
ConocoPhillips Canada has been directed to contain a pipeline spill in northwestern Alberta and prevent it from spreading.
A pipeline leak has spilled 380,000 litres of light petroleum within five kilometres of a provincially designated grizzly bear zone in northwestern Alberta, with some of it reaching a nearby creek.
Producer ConocoPhillips Canada says in a statement posted Tuesday on its website that the leak of condensate, a liquid produced with natural gas, was seen at a pipeline right-of-way near its Resthaven gas plant about 65 kilometres northeast of Grand Cache last Thursday afternoon.
Company staff also observed condensate in nearby Webb Creek.
“The pipeline has been shut down and isolated and we have activated our emergency response plan,” ConocoPhillips said.
“We have deployed over 150 responders to the site with equipment to contain the release and mitigate any environmental impact.”
The company said it reported the leak to the Alberta Energy Regulator. It said it has erected fencing and amphibian barriers to keep wildlife away from the area. A wildlife biologist is also on site.
The regulator said in a news release Tuesday that it had issued an environmental protection order to ConocoPhillips directing the company to contain the release and prevent it from spreading, while controlling access, collecting water and soil samples and submitting a final report to the AER.
The provincial agency said its staff are at the site, which is in the Little Smoky caribou range and near a core grizzly bear zone. It says condensate was visible as a sheen on the surface of the creek for about 4.5 kilometres below the pipeline leak.
The creek flows to a beaver dam and then into the Simonette River. The AER said the sheen was not visible on the river but an analysis indicated hydrocarbons present at slightly above minimum detection limits.
The regulator said no cause for the leak has been established and an investigation is underway.
One of the key uses of condensate is to dilute raw Alberta oilsands crude to allow it to flow in a pipeline to market. [Emphasis added]
[Refer also to:
Alberta’s had an average of two crude oil spills a day, every day for the past 37 years.
2015 07 08: What’s AER Chair, Ex-Encana-VP Protti going to fine Encana for fracing Alberta drinking water supplies? $16K fine for Apache pipeline spill not even a slap on wrist; Why is AER suddenly spurred into waving? Trying to look like a regulator?
2015 07 17: AER Frac Pilot Project: Earthquakes, tax increases, water restrictions, double homicide, spills and accidents shake Alberta town’s faith in fracking; Aging sour facilities in deregulated Fox Creek a big worry for council; AER’s FracQuake Red Light stops Chevron only 16 days; Families moving out