Hundreds of communities are already exposed to the risk of an oil spill because of pipelines[link to oil pipelines], but oil shippers can also use railcars[link to oil trains] and there is a proposal to ship it in tankers[link to shipping oil on the Great Lakes] across the Great Lakes. Oil transport companies are working around the clock to find new ways to move oil from the heartlands of Canada and the US to the coast.
Oil spills pose a significant hazard to our rivers, lakes and drinking water[link to risks to rivers and drinking water]. Oil spills and oil explosions also pose a significant risk to human health[link to human health]. It is estimated that between 2008 and 2012, US pipelines spilled an average of more than 3.1 million gallons of hazardous liquids per year. There have been many oil spills in Minnesota [link to Minnesota Spills].And yet more pipelines[link to Pipeline Development Projects in Minnesota] are being proposed, railroad companies are planning to transport more oil[link to Planned Rail Expansion in Minnesota] of services and there is even a proposal to ship oil across the Great Lakes[link to shipping oil on the great lakes].
Some significant spills include:
Minnesota has quite a history of spills [link to MN Spills] – the largest was Enbridge’s spill of 1.7 million gallons in Grand Rapids, MN in March, 1991. The oil flowed into a tributary of the Mississippi River.
In December 2013, a train derailment in North Dakota resulted in an explosion and the evacuation of Casselton, North Dakota. Casselton’s mayor, Edward McConnell, called for tighter regulations of oil trains [link to oil trains]]
Citizens of Mayflower, Arkansas endured a pipeline spill [link to oil pipelines] which turned a beautiful neighborhood into a wasteland of empty homes and sick families.
Are the profits of the oil transport companies like Enbridge[link to Enbridge], TransCanada[link to TransCanada], BNSF, CN and CP worth the risk to our health and our communities?
We think not. TAKE ACTION TODAY. Join MN350 in the fight to keep oil in the ground.