EnergyEnvironmentHot Sheet

Colorado oil company failed to report spills in North Dakota

Author: Associated Press - May 22, 2018 - Updated: May 22, 2018

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Farm Bureau ballot initiative(AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)

BISMARCK, N.D. — A Denver-based oil company operating in the Bakken oil patch says employees failed to report five spills in northwest North Dakota dating to October.

Cody Duran, vice president of privately-held Zavanna LLC, told The Bismarck Tribune that three spills occurred at the same saltwater disposal well last year and two spills occurred at different sites in January.

All spills were in Williams County and involved produced water or brine, a waste byproduct of oil production. Most of the contamination stayed on well facility locations, but one spill killed a strip of grass adjacent to the well pad.

Duran says Zavanna fired three employees, and a new production supervisor brought the spills to management’s attention. The company notified the state, and could be fined up to $12,500 a day for failure to report.

Associated Press