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C&E-1.2

Plains All American Pipeline

  • Goal: Ensure an adequate environmental review for this new pipeline project to evaluate the potential impacts natural resources, wildlife, and public health and safety
  • Year Started: 2015
  • Clients Get Oil Out!, Environmental Defense Center

On May 19, 2015, the Plains All American Pipeline ruptured, spilling what is now believed to be 451,500 gallons of heavy crude oil onto Refugio State Beach and into the Santa Barbara Channel. The oil spread over 150 miles of coastline, causing the closure of 138 square miles of fisheries, as well as state parks and campgrounds, and killing more than 300 marine mammals and seabirds. The economic and ecological damage was devastating.

 

Ruptured Plains All American Pipeline 901, Photo courtesy of Bruce Reither, Public Records Act Request

Looking back, it was all too clear that had Plains All American, the owner of the 28-year old pipeline, better managed this line and equipped it with an automatic shut-off system, the size of the spill could have been limited and the damage greatly reduced. Now, years later, Plains is looking to construct a new pipeline and it is critical we do not allow the same mistakes from the past. EDC and our clients are working to ensure an adequate environmental review for this new pipeline project to evaluate the potential impacts of this development.

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