Why pipelines are a bad idea

Published on Jul 31, 2013: A new analysis of oil and gas pipeline safety in the United States reveals a troubling history of spills, contamination, injuries and deaths. Read more at NoKeystone.org.

This time-lapse video shows pipeline incidents from 1986 to 2013, relying on publicly available data from the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Only incidents classified as “significant” by the agency are shown in the video. “Significant” incidents include those in which someone was hospitalized or killed, damages amounted to more than $50,000, more than 5 barrels of highly volatile substances or 50 barrels of other liquid were released, or where the liquid exploded or burned.

According to the data, since 1986 there have been nearly 8,000 incidents (nearly 300 per year on average), resulting in more than 500 deaths (red dots on the video), more than 2,300 injuries (yellow dots on the video), and nearly $7 billion in damage.
Since 1986 pipeline accidents have spilled an average of 76,000 barrels per year or more than 3 million gallons. This is equivalent to 200 barrels every day.


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  1. Terrible. We need a moratorium on oil and gas pipelines, except repairs,
    and we need much more frequent inspections, and stronger laws to protect
    people and the environment.

  2. Maybe the number of disastrous pipeline incidents in their states show why
    texass and oklahoma send maniacs to the Senate.

  3. Renewable sustainable energy? Well, it’s been developed and can be
    used…the oil companies….prefer this way.

  4. This is all about money and propaganda regarding jobs. Educated people must
    continue to help others understand the importance of protecting our natural
    environment because ultimately this is what we are dependent upon.

  5. Well, this is a good argument. Very good show of reasoning and logic to
    counter these facts. Yes, indeed.

  6. Most of the oil and gas we ship through pipelines does not go for our gas
    consumption. It only goes to investors pockets. GET REAL!!

  7. Electricity works for me. The collectors on my garage roof provide enough
    free power for the house and the electric car.

  8. Every one of these spills were cleaned up and the pipelines were repaired.
    Millions of barrels are carried in pipelines every day safely. Yesterday a
    train carrying oil derailed in Eastern North Dakota then another train hit
    it and ignited the oil in 10 cars. The oil spilled in an oil spill can be
    cleaned up and most of it can still be refined and made into usable
    petroleum products. The oil burning in the 10 cars will not be usable
    after the fire is out, because it got BURNED UP!!!!!!


  9. Mr. Alpert obviously does not understand the concept of “the cycling of
    matter”. All physical objects on earth such as oil don’t “go away” or get
    “BURNED UP!!!”. When the oil burns the carbon molecules are converted to
    carbon dioxide. Sulfur and other chemicals in the crude oil are converted
    into sulfur dioxide and other gaseous pollutants. They travel through the
    atmosphere where they cause harm to life forms both plants and animals –
    including humans. The point of this video is to encourage energy sources
    that don’t pollute. Oil that spills on the ground soaks in. If it is truly
    “cleaned up” (Mr. Alpert’s words) then all the soil would have to be
    removed and the oil separated from the soil particles. This process would
    leave the ground that was exposed to the oil stripped down to the subsoil
    or deeper. Life on this area of land would not return for hundreds or even
    thousands of years. This is how long it takes nature to make soil from
    subsoil (clay, etc.) or bedrock. The more likely scenario for a “clean up”
    would be to scrape the polluted soil and incinerate it at another location.
    Once again cycling the crude oil molecules along with the natural carbon
    content of the soil, into the atmosphere. Remember, all matter is neither
    created nor destroyed. It just keeps cycling through the environment.

  10. See. Pipelines are so much safer in Canada. No incidents north of 49.
    Lucky us or so the proponents would like us to believe.

  11. Looks like my state, Maine, has the best record! I’m all for oil: it’s way
    better than nuclear, and I’d rather it come from Canada than Iraq.

  12. it’s the 21st century there is no reason to stay with oil and gas… do
    people really think that fuel sources for transportation and heating
    stopped with the discovery of oil and the combustion engine?? a better
    safer cleaner planet is possible for future generations

  13. Being a Canadian and watching this, I can say that these spills are
    terrible. But if America doesn’t want this pipeline, I’m fine with that.
    The alternatives to this is to build a pipeline through the Rockies to
    British Columbia, and ship the oil to Asia for processing, or the more
    likely option of building a pipeline to New Brunswick, and have it
    processed there. This would create thousands of jobs in Atlantic Canada,
    which is where I’m from, and keep more of the money from the Oil Sands
    within Canada. So hey, if the the US doesn’t want our oil, that’s great!

  14. I honestly don’t want the pipeline. I just want people to leave nature
    alone. Didn’t they fucked up enough?

  15. There are people who would burn down the whole world for a bigger piece of
    pie. There are other people that will gladly help them do it for some
    crumbs from that pie. Examples below –>

  16. I suspect this not only covers pipelines but rail cars as well. In 2013
    more oil was spilled from rail cars than the previous 37 years combined.

  17. “Obama’s real lasting legacy is not his Obama-care (ACA), but his complete
    complicity with Big Oil and Gas in the volatile unreasonable poisoning of
    our air, our water, and the unadulterated poisoning of the Citizens of the
    USA with his uncensored endorsement of FRACKING Natural Gas (LNG) and Tar
    sands oil distribution!!”

  18. so obama says no to send it through the states… and now its going to come
    through canada thanks to harper?? can’t we just find an alternative… jeez

  19. you will see US citizens not getting their brain out of the trash bin and
    still believing what they have made believe

  20. if you keep sucking the oil endlessly out of the ground and not expect
    problems eventually, earth quakes etc, by the time it starts to get really
    bad its going to be to late folks, we should have stopped this years ago

  21. Spills, contamination, injuries and deaths caused by oil pipelines. Let’s
    switch to clean nuclear already.

  22. Til they figure out a way to transport fuels good luck. Trust me I have
    worked around those things and they are protected some are even flown over
    daily by small planes and patrolled constantly. I’ve done land surveys
    where we had to cross and locate these on the plats we were making and we
    were visited every time by the people whose job it is to safe-guard ’em.

  23. @ 1:04 Pipeline incidents since 1986 have resulted in around 8000 spills,
    explosions and other incidents, over 500 deaths, over 2000 injuries and
    have resulted in around $7 billion in property damage … what the video
    doesn’t indicate, and really should have to connect the dots, is that the
    oil industry has contributed billions towards the campaigns of almost every
    sitting member of Congress and to all presidents since before this 1986
    counter began … we have ready alternatives to oil and gas ~ specifically
    Thorium fission molten salt reactors, solar reflector power plants and
    fields of wind turbines, and have the potential for creating a distributed
    energy grid using roof mounted solar voltaic panels and mini helix wind
    turbines … until we get the money out of politics, its not likely this
    entrenched corruption will change things for the better …
    https://movetoamend.org + https://represent.us + http://www.wolf-pac.com

  24. ???”We’ve invested a lot of money, time and resources to ensure that we’re
    using the best available technology to operate our pipelines with the
    utmost integrity,”??? Pipelines may be better than railcars but are still
    worse than nothing!

    Read more: Sunken Great Lakes oil pipeline raises spill fears – The Denver

  25. If Keystone isn’t built, the oil is going to be transported by rail. Rail
    is a much more dangerous means of transporting oil and much more carbon

    But perhaps you’d prefer your town end up like Lac-Mégantic, Quebec (47

  26. +When Saturday Comes.. +I DerpSaurs I +When I saw your face I fell in Love♥ ..
    +Derpino Pereira Pinto, +Whenyousay Nothingatall…*When* +Yellowstone Park
    Service Stations +explodedsoda.. +Everything goes boom! +NuffSaid…*///-*

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