Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Poplar Pipeline clean-up transitions from emergency response

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) announced on Monday that response to the Poplar Pipeline spill in the Yellowstone River will transition from emergency response and oil recovery to long-term remediation and monitoring.

This means that jurisdiction over the response will now revert to the DEQ from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which has the authority to respond to spills that represent a substantial threat to public health under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan.

For the past two weeks, since the last of the Yellowstone River’s ice melted, the river has been heavily monitored by both boat and air. While responders have seen staining and sheen, they have not found any recoverable oil, marking the end of EPA jurisdiction.

Bridger Pipeline, LLC, which was responsible for the spill, will continue the oil recovery and monitoring under the authority of the DEQ, which will receive support from the EPA and Montana’s Department of Natural Resources and Conservation and Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks.

The DEQ will also be deciding on penalty and reimbursement charges for Bridger Pipeline, LLC, in the coming months.

EP Energy is located at 1001 Louisiana St., Houston.

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EP Energy U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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