7,978 fatalities by in 2013 – 4,199 by 2001 = 3,779, which is more than the 2,977 killed by the hijackers on 9/11. If the fossil fuel industry was a foreign country, we would have invaded it by now. Why should we let that industry invade our lands for their profit? Let’s not permit a fossil fuel disaster here.
Center for Biological Diversity wrote on YouTube 31 July 2013 America’s Dangerous Pipelines:
A new analysis of oil and gas pipeline safety in the United States reveals a troubling history of spills, contamination, injuries and deaths. Read more at NoKeystone.org.
This time-lapse video shows pipeline incidents from 1986 to 2013, relying on publicly available data from the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Only incidents classified as “significant” by the agency are shown in the video. “Significant” incidents include those in which someone was hospitalized or killed, damages amounted to more than $50,000, more than 5 barrels of highly volatile substances or 50 barrels of other liquid were released, or where the liquid exploded or burned.
According to the data, since 1986 there have been nearly 8,000 incidents (nearly 300 per year on average), resulting in more than 500 deaths (red dots on the video), more than 2,300 injuries (yellow dots on the video), and nearly $7 billion in damage. Since 1986 pipeline accidents have spilled an average of 76,000 barrels per year or more than 3 million gallons. This is equivalent to 200 barrels every day.
More detail in Analysis by Richard Stover, Ph.D., and the Center for Biological Diversity, including that natural gas second only to oil for pipeline spills. And the leading causes of incidents are:
- excavation damage, as in the incident near Thomson, GA in 2010 that killed a man or the fire at a 10-inch pipeline that evacuated all 700 people from Milford, Texas 14 November 2014, and probably the the 30-inch pipeline that exploded in Harper County, Oklahoma in October 2013 and could be seen from Kansas and Texas. The cause of that last one was undetermined at the time, and a few days later PHMSA didn’t know, either. If it spontaneously blew up, that’s even worse.
- and corrosion, such as the five items on that PHMSA Final Order to Spectra Energy in December 2012 and the numerous other incidents PHMSA lists for Spectra, which according to one of its own employees, never bothered to check a pipeline for corrosion. And beyond pipelines there’s that chemical spill in West Virginia that put 300,000 people out of drinking water and speaking of corrosion, there’s the Waycross Superfund site that’s partly been imported into our watersheds. Don’t we have enough pollution already?
Here’s (an incomplete) Wikipedia list of pipeline accidents in the United States in the 21st century. March 2013 alone had 13 major oil spills in 30 days worldwide.
You can look up specific pipeline incidents through Pipeline Safety Tracker, such as one “Environmental Cracking Related” near Albany Georgia 29 May 2014 that caused $209,447 in property damage. Albany, where Spectra offshoot Sabal Trail Transmission wants to put a compressor station. Like the two compressor stations where Spectra has had major blowouts in less than a year.