Environmental Protection

Train Derails, Spills Thousands of Gallons of Oil

A Canadian Pacific train derailed on Wednesday in western Minnesota, spilling approximately 30,000 gallons of oil. A 26,000 gallon tank ruptured and two other tanks were leaking oil as a result of the derailment.

When the mile-long Canadian Pacific train derailed in Minnesota, no injuries were reported but an estimated 30,000 gallons of oil were spilled. Most of the oil spill came from a single tank, but at least two other tanks were leaking when the cleanup crews made it to the scene.

Dan Olson, a spokesman for the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, said, “Minnesota is having a late spring and the site is still frozen and covered with quite a lot of snow, which helped prevent any oil from moving down the ditch or soaking into the soil. The accident currently poses no threat to either surface or ground waters."

This spill adds fuel to the Keystone XL pipeline controversy, and environmental activists are already planning to attend an April 18 public hearing to discuss the pipeline. Although the US State Department said the pipeline would not have a large impact on the environment, the train derailment certainly shows the risks that come along with oil transport.

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