Pipeline spill of produced water far larger than estimated

November 23, 2019 GMT

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Authorities say a pipeline spill of so-called “produced water” in western North Dakota was much larger than initially estimated by state inspectors.

The North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality said Friday that about 1.4 million gallons of produced water were released in the Oct. 1 spill into a small creek and stock pond located about 1.5 miles north of Manning. The original report said the spill included about 21,000 gallons of the water, which often contains various chemicals and traces of oil.

Inspectors say the initial estimate was based on “observation of surface impacts.” The follow-up investigation included an analysis of meter readings.

The creek discharges into the Knife River about a mile away, but inspectors say no impacts have been detected in the river.


This story has been corrected to take out the reference to March in first paragraph. The spill occurred on Oct. 1.