A leak in the Keystone Pipeline has released an estimated 383,000 gallons of oil – about the size of an Olympic swimming pool – into the North Dakota wetlands. The leak is the second leak in two years in the 2,600 mile long pipeline, which carries oil from Alberta, Canada, all the way down to southern Texas. In 2017, the pipeline leaked over 400,000 gallons of oil across a swath of agricultural land in South Dakota. 

CRAIG, MISSOURI – MARCH 21: A home is surrounded by floodwater on March 21, 2019 in Craig, Missouri. The town of Craig is completely surrounded by floodwater, every building water damaged. Several Midwest states are battling some of the worst flooding they have experienced in decades as rain and snow melt from the recent “bomb cyclone” has inundated rivers and streams. At least three deaths have been linked to the flooding. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The spill occurred as the US State Department is collecting public comments on the Keystone XL expansion in the Keystone Pipeline that would run through Montana, Nebraska, and South Dakota, crossing several tribal lands in the process. Keystone XL has been the subject of ongoing protests by environmental activists and members of tribal nations whose land the proposed pipeline would cross.

For activists who oppose the Keystone XL pipeline, this latest spill is further proof that it would have serious environmental consequences. “This is exactly the kind of spill we are worried about when it comes to Keystone XL being built. It has never been IF a pipeline breaks but rather WHEN,” said Joye Braun, an organiser with the Indigenous Environmental Network 



Battered by Floods, Nebraskans Worry About Pipeline Spills


T0GTE0 Aerial view showing the destroyed Spencer Dam after a massive ice jam destroyed the hydroelectric dam on the Niobrara River in Boyd County March 16, 2019 near Spencer, Nebraska. Historic flooding caused by rapid melting of record snowfall sweep through rural communities in Nebraska and Iowa killing at least four people in the Plains and Midwest.