Keystone line to remain closed until corrective action taken

This Oct. 30 photo provided by the North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality shows affected land from a Keystone oil pipeline leak near Edinburg, N.D. Federal regulators have ordered the Keystone pipeline to remain shut down until its Canadian owner takes corrective action aimed at determining the cause of the breach.

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Federal regulators have ordered the Keystone pipeline to remain shut down until its Canadian owner takes corrective action aimed at determining the cause of a breach that leaked an estimated 383,000 gallons of oil in northeastern North Dakota.

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued the order Tuesday to Calgary, Alberta-based TC Energy. The action comes one week after the pipeline leak was discovered and affected about 22,500 square feet of land near Edinburg, in Walsh County. The pipeline has been shut down since Oct. 29.

The order requires the company to send the affected portion of the 30-inch steel pipeline to an independent laboratory for testing. The company also must develop a plan to restart the line and for remediation.

TC Energy, formerly known as TransCanada, said in a statement it expects to have the damaged portion of the pipeline excavated by the end of the week. The company said it has about 200 people at the site working around the clock who are “focused on cleanup and remediation activities.”

“We’re continuing to monitor air quality around the site and the surrounding area throughout cleanup, with no concerns,” TC Energy said.

Karl Rockeman, North Dakota’s water quality division director, said Wednesday about 252,000 gallons of crude oil have been recovered.

Rockeman said some wetlands were affected, but not any sources of drinking water.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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