Oil-soaked soil from a Kansas pipeline spill was sent to a landfill near Omaha.

LINCOLN — Thousands of cubic yards of oil-soaked soil from a Kansas pipeline leak ended up in a landfill in the Omaha area, and the EPA wants the state to make sure it’s not polluting anything here.

“This is a foreign corporation that is using Nebraska as a dumping ground,” said Jane Klib, founder of Bold Nebraska.

State officials, she said, should have informed Nebraska residents that this waste is coming here and should now push for regular monitoring to make sure it’s not impacting the soil or water here.

The oil-soaked soil contains some hazardous chemicals, including benzene and hydrogen sulfide, according to laboratory reports posted on the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy website.

Lab tests say everything is fine

Officials from Canada’s TC Energy and the Pheasant Point landfill near Bennington said Thursday laboratory testing of soil delivered from a crude oil leak at the Keystone pipeline in northeast Kansas deemed it safe to deposit at the landfill.

Carla Felix, a spokeswoman for the Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy, said the department is “confident” that the soil is classified as a “non-hazardous solid waste” after examining laboratory reports required by the Kansas Department of Health and Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency. environment.

“Physant Point is designed to receive these types of solid waste and complies with federal and Nebraska landfill regulations,” said Lisa Disbrow of waste management, which owns the Pheasant Point landfill.

She said the “cells” of the landfill have 2-foot-thick composite liners of compacted clay and a 60-mil (thousand-inch) thick polyethylene sheet that keeps groundwater from becoming contaminated.

The pipeline burst in December

The landfill, which is north of Nebraska Route 36 at 216th Street, also has monitoring wells to detect problems, Disbrow said.

She said Thursday that 16,500 cubic yards of contaminated soil has so far been hauled away by trucks due to a pipeline spill that occurred Dec. 7 near Washington, Kansas.

The Examiner heard rumors that the soil arrived in Nebraska a month ago, but only recently was able to confirm it.

Documents on the NDEE website indicate that on Dec. 14, TC Energy initially applied to deposit up to 100,000 tons or 75,000 cubic yards of soil at the Rolling Meadows landfill near Topeka, Kansas, which is also run by Waste Management.

The Nebraska landfill was chosen because it is larger and can handle more solid waste, Disbrow said. She added that he regularly accepts solid waste from out of state.

If 75,000 cubic yards were sent to the Pheasant Point landfill, it would cover an area the size of a football field and almost 40 feet deep.

The pipeline leak occurred on a section of the Keystone pipeline that runs from Steele City, Nebraska to Cushing, Oklahoma.

Almost half a million gallons of crude oil, about 13,000 barrels, poured into Mill Creek east of Washington, Kansas. This is the largest oil spill on the Keystone pipeline since its commissioning 13 years ago.

The culprit of the leak was a defective weld

Two weeks ago, TC Energy said the cause of the leak was a weld defect in a steel pipeline. The company has estimated the cost of “recovery, investigation and collaborative training” at $480 million.

Kleeb, whose group led the opposition to the now-derelict Keystone pipeline satellite, Keystone XL, said “by no means” could the soil and other materials recovered from the pipeline leak be hazardous.

Citizens should have been informed that this waste is coming from Kansas, she said, and should have been made aware of the ongoing monitoring of it.

“How many landfills said no before ours said yes?” Kleeb asked.

The clean-up order, approved by the EPA on Jan. 6, said the spill significantly affected fish and wildlife and posed a threat to human health and the environment. The oil was initially 10 inches thick 1.5 miles downstream of Mill Creek, which is adjacent to the spill site, the Environmental Protection Agency said.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, a larger diversion is currently under construction to channel the stream around the spill site.

The agency said last week that a new phase of spill response had begun, focusing on “identifying and implementing tactics to remove remaining recoverable oil from surface water, ice, debris, sediment and shoreline.”

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