No oil in Michigan river, Enbridge says

Aug. 2, 2010 at 10:30 AM
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MARSHALL, Mich., Aug. 2 (UPI) -- No oil remains in the Kalamazoo River more than one week after one of the world's longest oil pipelines burst in southern Michigan, an energy company said.

A 30-inch-diameter oil pipeline ruptured July 26, sending oil into nearby Talmadge Creek and the Kalamazoo River.

Enbridge Energy Partners, the Canadian company that operates the pipeline on the Lakehead system, said in a statement that "no oil remains" in the Kalamazoo River and "sheen only remains upstream of Battle Creek."

The company said they didn't know what caused the rupture or exactly how much oil was released into waterways in southern Michigan. Preliminary estimates said more than 20,000 barrels of oil spilled, though Enbridge said that roughly "10,000 barrels of oil have been removed from the waterways."

Regional officials with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said the spill shouldn't pose a threat to Lake Michigan.

Concerns about air quality south of Battle Creek led to the evacuations Thursday, following 30 voluntary departures earlier last week. Southern Michigan officials were warning area residents to avoid coming into contact with contaminated water.

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