Oil leak shuts down portion of Keystone pipeline

Image Keystone Pipeline pump station

Crews have shut down the Keystone Pipeline on Thursday after a reported leak of more than 200,000 gallons of oil.

TransCanada said in its statement that it expected the pipeline to remain shut down as the company responds to the leak.

The incident comes just days before a Nebraska public service commission is set to decide on a proposed route for the Keystone XL through the state.

A TransCanada crew shut down the pipeline at 6 a.m. Thursday morning after detecting an oil leak along the line, the company said.

While details are still emerging around this spill, we know it occurred in Marshall County on South Dakota's northern border.

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TransCanada said at the time that the leak was the first detected on the pipeline since it began operating, though there had been leaks at pumping stations.

At least 210,000 gallons of crude oil derived from oil sands-a thicker, sticker type of oil than conventional crude-spilled from the pipeline into an agricultural area, according to South Dakota's environment and natural resources agency. TransCanada is providing State and Federal regulators, including the Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and the National Response Center (NRC), with accurate and confirmed information on an ongoing basis.

The Keystone pipeline has leaked in South Dakota before, as recently as last spring. An estimated volume of 5,000 barrels, or 210,000 gallons, leaked.

The Keystone Pipeline is part of a 2,687-mile system that also is to include the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, which has faced persistent opposition from environmental groups, American Indian tribes and some landowners.

The Keystone XL pipeline got federal USA approval in March when President Donald Trump overturned former President Barack Obama's rejection of the project in 2015.

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