Brine, Oil Spill in ND

Tuesday, May 24, 2016 @ 07:05 AM gHale


A tank overflow caused a spill of about 16,800 gallons of oil and more than 100,000 gallons of a mixture of saltwater and oil in Marmarth, North Dakota Wednesday.

The spill happened Wednesday at a site operated by Texas-based Denbury Onshore LLC, near the town of Marmarth in the southwest corner of the state, said officials at the North Dakota Department of Health.

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The company didn’t immediately respond to a telephone message seeking comment.

Initial estimates show about 105,000 gallons of what’s known as produced water, a mixture of saltwater and oil that can contain drilling chemicals, released.

An undetermined amount of the release left the well pad and has affected pastureland.

Personnel with the state Health Department and Oil and Gas Division are at the site and monitoring the investigation.

Brine spills have been an issue throughout North Dakota. In just one case in October, after workers lost control of a well in northwestern North Dakota, oil and saltwater continued to spill across the area until workers were able to shut it down four days later, officials said.