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 Arkansas oil spill diverted into wetland

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Posts : 7972
Join date : 2012-05-29
Location : Manchester UK

PostSubject: Arkansas oil spill diverted into wetland   Tue 09 Apr 2013, 08:11

Activists claim Arkansas oil spill diverted into Wetlands

By Stephen C. Webster
Sunday, April 7, 2013 16:59 EDT

Activists with the group Tar Sands Blockade published new videos on Sunday
showing oil from the Arkansas pipeline rupture purportedly diverted
from a residential neighborhood into a wetland area to keep it out sight
and, most importantly, out of the media.

While it’s not clear if the oil was intentionally moved into the
wetland, the company says it is cleaning pavement with power washing
devices, which could cause some of the oil to be pushed off neighborhood
streets and into other areas.

Activists also interviewed a local resident who claimed the oil has continued “flowing” into Lake Conway since the spill happened.

A letter sent by ExxonMobil to residents of Mayflower on March 31 claims the oil did not reach Lake Conway.

“I don’t have allergies,” a man who lives on Lake Conway told tar
sands activists. “But now my sinuses are bothering me. My throat’s
bothering me. My eyes water constantly. But they [Exxon] act like
nothing’s wrong. They don’t have to live here, we do. And we’re not
moving just because of them.”

The activists noted that they were turned away from the area several
times before by police and Exxon spill cleanup workers, but they
returned on Saturday just before sundown and managed to sneak in to
capture footage of the oiled wetlands. In two separate videos, nearby residents say they’ve been made sick my the spill, which has tremendously affected their air quality.

This footage has largely remained out of the media due to the lockdown that’s descended upon Mayflower
nearly a week since the spill. Reporters touring the damage with
Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel were allegedly turned away by
Exxon workers. One journalist, InsideClimate News’s Susan White, was even threatened with arrest
when she asked a question of Exxon’s “public affairs” desk inside the
spill cleanup command center. The company has also secured a no-fly zone
over the spill area.

Video of Lake Conway’s wetlands shows thousands of what Exxon called
“absorbent pads” — which appear to be nothing more than paper towels —
littering the blackened landscape as thick, soupy crude bubbles across
the water’s surface. The company insists that air quality in the
affected region is being measured by the Environmental Protection
Agency, and that tests show “levels that are either non-detect or that
are below any necessary action levels.” Exxon also says that the area’s
drinking water remains unaffected.

A phone number given by Exxon to reach the company’s “downstream
media relations” team did not appear to be correct, and a spokesperson
was not available for comment.

This video was published to YouTube on April 6, 2013.

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