Friday, May 15, 2015

Enbridge Agrees to Pay $75 Million for Massive Kalamazoo River Tar Sands Spill

In this July 29, 2012 file photo, a worker monitors the water in Talmadge Creek in Marshall Township, Mich., near the Kalamazoo River as oil from a ruptured pipeline, owned by Enbridge Inc, is vacuumed out the water. (Credit: AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File) Click to Enlarge.
Canadian oil company Enbridge has agreed to pay $75 million for its role in a 2010 pipeline rupture that resulted in the largest inland oil spill in U.S. history.

Enbridge settled with the state of Michigan this week over the Kalamazoo River oil spill, a disaster that sent more than 800,000 gallons of Canadian tar sands crude into the river.  Under the settlement, the oil company will pay $30 million to restore or create 300 acres of wetlands, in an effort to help to improve the health of the Kalamazoo River.  The spill affected 38 miles of the river itself and 4,435 acres of shoreline, according to the Detroit Free Press.
The cleanup of the spill proved difficult and expensive — tar sands is thicker than conventional oil, so instead of floating on top of the river’s water it sank to the bottom.  That meant that Endbridge had to dredge the bottom of the river and the river banks to try to remove the oil, and then plant native vegetation along the banks in an attempt to restore the surrounding land.  Enbridge puts the cost of cleanup of the spill at $1.21 billion, a figure that’s $85.9 million higher the company first estimated.

In spite of this cleanup, residents who live near the river still say they see residual oil in the river, and they won’t fish in it.

Read more at Enbridge Agrees to Pay $75 Million for Massive Kalamazoo River Tar Sands Spill

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