Pipeline rupture sends 40,000 litres of oil into Alberta creek

The Alberta Energy Regulator says a pipeline has spilled 40,000 litres (roughly 250 barrels) of oil emulsion into a creek.

Creek flows into source of Edmonton water supply

A pump jack located near the town of Drayton Valley, Alta., is pictured in this file photo. (Kory Siegers/CBC)

The Alberta Energy Regulator says a pipeline has spilled 40,000 litres (roughly 250 barrels) of oil emulsion into a creek.

The regulator said on its website that the incident happened Thursday on a Bonterra Energy Corp. line south of Drayton Valley, Alta.

It said the line was shut in and depressurized, and that containment booms were installed.

The AER said no impacts to wildlife were reported.

Calgary-based Bonterra said in a news release that it began investigating a problem with the pipeline at 8 a.m. Thursday, and at 1 p.m. it discovered a rupture that was leaking a mixture of saltwater and oil into Washout Creek.

On Monday, it said the pipeline severed due to the complete collapse of a creek bank following recent flooding. 

It said it is removing the oil with booms and vacuums, and is mitigating the effect on wildlife by setting up barriers as well as visual deterrents that include having people present.

Washout Creek flows into the North Saskatchewan River, which is the source of Edmonton's water supply, and Bonterra said it has placed additional booms where the creek meets the river as an extra precaution.

The company said cleanup and recovery is expected to continue for the next three weeks.


  • The leak was originally reported as being crude oil. The company clarified on Aug. 19 that it was an oil emulsion. The saltwater-and-oil leak was discovered on Aug. 15.
    Aug 19, 2019 12:53 PM MT


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