EDINBURG, N.D. — The Keystone Pipeline oil spill in Walsh County in northeastern North Dakota released 383,040 gallons of oil into a wetlands area, the North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality announced Thursday, Oct. 31. The pipeline is operated by TC Energy.
As of Wednesday night, the oil had not migrated beyond the immediately affected area of approximately 2,500 square yards in a rural area 3 miles northwest of Edinburg, according to a release by TC Energy.
TC Energy is working with NADEQ personnel to determine the cause of the spill, according to a release from NADEQ.
North Dakota Division of Water Quality Director Karl Rockeman said 2,500 square yards is considered a high-impact spill.
Walsh County Sheriff Ron Jurgens said it's unclear exactly how long the area will be closed to traffic.
Kandi Mosset-White, Native Energy and Climate Campaign coordinator for the Bemidji (Minn.)-based Indigenous Environmental Network, said her organization is still considering their steps since the spill.
"We shouldn't become complacent," she said. "It's not OK that these things happen. It's not OK that there's a spill, that even when a company tells us that they have the highest technology available, it still fails. People shouldn't be OK with that."
Presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., tweeted about the spill Thursday afternoon, saying the Keystone Pipeline should never have been built and that as president he would shut it down.
This is what happens when we have a president who ignores scientists and puts short-term fossil fuel profits ahead of the environment and the future of the planet.— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) October 31, 2019
As president, I will shut down the Keystone Pipeline that should never have been built in the first place. https://t.co/hZD5QhKo6k