For the past few months North Dakota has been in the media spotlight. Protesters have been joining with the Standing Rock Sioux tribe to take action and block the Dakota Access Pipeline from happening for fear of an oil spill among other reasons. Now it seems as though their fears are justified.
Earlier this week an oil spill occurred 150 miles away from the protests in Cannon Ball, North Dakota. Officials have stated that the spill occurred in Billings County and came from the Belle Fourche Pipeline. They are estimating that over 175,000 gallons have been spilled from this Pipeline.
Out of the estimated 175,000 gallons, around 130,000 gallons are estimated to have been spilled into the Ash Coulee Creek while the rest seeped onto the land according to Bill Suess, an official at the North Dakota Department of Health. The Belle Fourche Pipeline was built in the 1980’s and can carry around 1,000 gallons of oil every day.
Suess and his department have determined that the Pipeline began leaking sometime around December 5th of this year. Investigators are still trying to determine why the leak occurred however there are around 100 people working to clean it up at this time.