Exxon Spills the Yellowstone, Hires Out-of-State for Cleanup, & Fails to Warn Ag Downstream

by jhwygirl

All of that being reported in the local press. Property owner adjacent to the river have been evacuated….and ditch owners all along the Yellowstone are doing what they can to keep the toxic mess out of their systems.

The NYTimes just got the story up in the last two hoursdo make sure to hit that link and see the devastation.

Exxon? YOU SUCK.

Below are some pictures from the owner of the Blue Creek Farms ranch who is now faced with dealing with this absolutely devastating spill of crude. I hope to be able to speak with him tomorrow.

Montana Department of Environmental Equality has a 24 hour hotline where spills are to be reported. I hope some industrious reporters are out there finding out what role the state and the feds are taking in dealing with this. Let’s hope Exxon isn’t out there on their own on this holiday weekend.

Good Goddess.

UPDATE: The Wall Street Journal is reporting the early estimate is that 1000 barrels have spilled into the Yellowstone River.

Tim Thennis, a spokesman for the Montana Disaster and Emergency Services division, provided that initial estimate. He added that although no cause of the spill has been determined, it’s possible that heavy flooding affecting that part of the U.S. could have played a part. Thennis said that flooding is also interfering with the clean-up effort, meaning the oil could reach the Missouri River, of which the Yellowstone is a tributary, making the task even more difficult for emergency responders. Montana emergency officials have notified officials in North Dakota that the oil could be heading their way, Tennis said.

“There’s no way to capture [the oil] right now,” Thennis told Dow Jones Newswires. “The further it spreads the more difficult it becomes.”

Pictures in the Billings Gazette turn my stomach. Wildlife, farm fields – all coated in oil. 150 miles of river and counting. North Dakota has been warned.

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  1. wonder how much exxonmobile plans to contribute to dennis rehberg’s campaign to cover their ass on this huge debacle?

    look on the bright side. exxonmobile should have plenty of resources to clean it up. they never seem to have to pay any taxes to the us government anymore.

  2. Disaster Capitalism at our doorstep – ya think? Watch Exxon’s stock go – ! Up !! UP!!! while WE, the People, we get the slick!!! and the sludge.
    Wonder what those ‘oilies’ have paid the press or words to that effect- “we don’t really know what’s going on – we’ll just have to wait and see..” crap – almost a “Move along folks there’s nothing here to see, that’s right Move along nothing here”
    The Yellowstone is over flowing it’s banks up and down the River… and the Exxon station is right on the UP Surging Yellowstone R which any fool could see was coming – they had plenty of time to shut down the danger but Noooooooooooo it’s not profitable to shut down ~ [Capitalism is the Problem – It cannot be fixed – it must be removed. Some solutions: Nationalize Banking, Energy, Transportation, Big AG and Health Care] The park across the street so to speak has been closed for 5 weeks due to this Sensational River Rise… So we are waiting to hear if Satan was actually responsible for this ‘rupture -(‘ruptured rapture’ )(shut up i’m funny).
    We wonder why Exxon just doesn’t own it? All this song and dance is playing us for fools (ughT Oooo the – F – word) You/Oil Barons should have figured this was going to happen since you thrive on SPECULATION – perhaps You did… but SO What Exxon says – So what.
    Who is paying these Exxenron tools ??- note the what was it Northern Response Team Alpha or some Pentagon/Satan yes this team was coming here to scratch their pointed little heads – “boss, uhhh we shoulda shut this operation down a WEEK ago at the least” Hind sight pays and the bill for this EXXON caused SPILL will be paid by the Tax payers and the again at the pump. Just look at their track record.
    ALL Energy forms and resources should be owned by the People. No one person, no cartel should corner the market/ Power corrupts and Absolute Power corrupts Absolute/ Solution: the market will own the resource as we should all share in equally –
    In Reality: The Oil Barons Exploit this Disaster like always.

    • I want to see a map of this pipeline. I want to know the last time it was inspected. I want to know who is responsible for inspecting it. Is this pipeline on state-owned land? Is it on federal owned land? What other pipelines are out there? (I know we have one that crosses the Clark Fork and the blackfoot several times down these parts.)

      Somewhere I hear someone whimpering “They’re self-reporting…., they’re self-regulating..”

    • How to nationalize the Fed. The American Monetary Act -HR6550
      http://www.monetary.org/
      “money would be created by government as money,not as interest-bearing debt.” Then this money is spent into the country by repairing our infrastructure both physical (bridges, highways, schools, etc.) and human (national health care). The colonies were successful in using variations on this system until the Bank of England complained. Our revolution was paid for by the government issuing “Continentals” that Tom Paine called “the cornerstone” of the revolution. Great articles over at this site. And I highly recommend “The Lost Science of Money”. The Austerians don’t want you to know about sensible solutions.

  3. ever notice that when stuff like this happens the deregulation crowd goes silent? crickets from eric and swede on this one….

    • Ingemar Johansson

      Actually I was going to be first with some snarky comment ’bout Dennis seen leaving the scene with a trencher.

      • Ingemar Johansson

        Hold on pb.

        According to Conner (below) the Government audited the pipeline on a regular basis.

        So much for your regulators.

        • …gawd what a fool ~ The “Regulators” of the MMS are a wholly owned subsidiary of the Capitalist Oily Pigs. You don’t make snarky you make Stupid remarks.

          Dude,i explained it clearly: This pipe should have been shut down by the fn’g pigs at Exxon; the conditions made it imperative as evidenced by the Rising Rushing River! even if it was a brand new pipe ~ but Nooooooooo it’s full steam ahead for the Capitalist maggots/Republicans INSIDE. Now you want to assuage this lunacy on the back of tools with the drab note ‘Regulators’ are the problem.
          Dude: you really are a piece of work.

  4. The Billings Gazette reports:

    “The pipeline under the Yellowstone River was built in 1991 and was last inspected in 2009, when no issues were found with the line. In December 2010, soundings were done which determined that the pipeline was 5-8 feet below the river bed. A government audit of pipeline data, done in 2009, turned up no safety issues, [Exxon spokesman] Pruessing said.”

    Dare we be thankful that BP doesn’t own the pipeline?

    • Thanks James for digging that out.

      Call me a cynic here, but I do remember some of the specifics of the Gulf spill.

      The industry is self-regulated. So who did these inspections in 2009? Was it Exxon themselves?

      Also part of that quote is “A government audit of pipeline data….showed no safety issues.” Not really clear where that data originates.

      Somehow – and considering all the information that came out in the BP spill – I’m betting it was Exxon’s data.

  5. Jesse Homs

    Not to rain on the parade, but we are an industrial society, we all drive cars and fly on aircraft and buy food and merchandise shipped by ships and rail and trucks. And … accidents happen. So rather than going all morally superior on Exxon at this moment, perhaps we should all just say Oops! And clean it up.

    We all might be amazed at the quantity of oil and natural gas that passes through pipelines each day. This is one tiny accident.

    • Ingemar Johansson

      Who are you and what have you done with Mark.

      • Jesse Homs

        You and Dave Rye do this to the point of distraction – you don’t try to understand the complexities of individuals and lines of reasoning. You simply view everyone from your own framework without regard to nuance. It’s part of the authoritarian specter – black and white thinking.

        And it’s not just you, so don’t feel singled out. All of the pwoggies here that are hammering mean old Exxon are doing the same thing. A minor accident has confirmed everything they believed, and to say otherwise is to violate that world view. It’s a combination of moral superiority coupled with confirmation bias that leads to insularity and arrogance.

    • We are a Warrior Society. Lets just let illegal invasions go – Accidents Happen.
      you sir, were and ACCIDENT

  6. Chuck

    Calm down J-Grl, they are all over it.
    I have led teams involved in similar events and the first reports are almost always wrong.
    Oil distribution is highly regulated. The coast guard and EPA are the lead agencies. Out of state firms are brought in because they are the only ones with the massive resources and experience needed to clean it up. They will hire lot’s of locals. Once the oil is cleaned up an NRDA will be done using Exxon’s money and the public’s scientists and Exxon will write a huge check.
    I’ll let you know if the Exxon press releases or statements sound like bullsht. So far they don’t. If you want to sit in on the morning Incident Command Meeting in Billings call Exxon and ask them. If I was running it I’d let anyone in who asked as long as they didn’t interfere with the urgent tasks at hand.

    • J-girl we are surrounded by imbeciles – “they are all over it ” like with the Exxon Valdez sheeeeeeeeeesh man try to get some critical thinking skills working.
      They Didn’t shut the fn’g Pipe down under serious stress – Opppps

  7. Chuck

    J-grl,
    Don’t waste your time with the MT DEQ .
    This link is for the lead agency for spill response in our region and they basically answer to the President through Lisa Jackson at EPA. This spill response will be large, sophisticated and a top priority. This is one thing our government does very, very well.
    http://www.rrt8.nrt.org/

    • …who are you? where have you been ?
      Our Gov’t – >>>that’s US … WE the Govmint, Didn’t Spill anything; We don’t get a Dime from it and now you want us to pay for the clean up?

      Critical Thinking Skills?

      • Darwin26 – please take a chill-pill. there’s no reason to go attacking Chuck because he has a different perspective or opinion on the matter.

        You need to engage civilly here.

    • that is a horrible and useless link chuck. as far as i can tell, the site tells us that this agency doesn’t actually do anything….

      “RRT VIII is a planning, policy, and coordinating body which does not respond directly to the scene of an oil spill or hazardous substance release. It provides assistance as requested to the On-Scene Coordinator during an incident. For a thorough description of both the National Response System and the responsibilities of the Regional Response Team, please visit the National Response Team’s web site.”

      after tempting me with a reference to their web site then they neglect to ACTUALLY PROVIDE THE LINK!!!

      this is a great example of useless and lame government use of the internet. thanks for the laugh.

      you actually wrote:

      “This spill response will be large, sophisticated and a top priority. This is one thing our government does very, very well.”

      and i thought i was emphatic. dude, that is one strong endorsement of confidence…….

      i am sure the landowners along the river will be heartened to hear that this large sophisticated planning, policy and coordinating body is on the job.

      and the only thing i have seen the government do very very well in this country so far is suck up to big corporations.

      maybe you provided this as sarcastic tongue in cheek. if so, good one.

  8. it appears that gov schweitzer is not so confident of exxonmobile’s assessment of the damage…….

    http://www.seattlepi.com/business/article/Exxon-claims-spill-damage-limited-gov-doubtful-1450267.php

  9. it appears that the exxon flak mouthpiece preussing is whitewashing this incident ……

    http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2011/07/04/travel-us-oil-spill-yellowstone-river_8548117.html

  10. Chuck

    Hey thanks J.
    PB.
    The link has names and contact numbers of individuals that can answer all of your questions. The response center and the Unified Command on site will be busy.




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