ConocoPhillips Canada condensate cleanup continues in Alberta

Cleanup continues from a pipeline failure in early June that resulted in the release of about 2,400 bbl of condensate about 65 km northeast of Grande Cache in west-central Alberta.

The condensate release was first observed June 9 at a pipeline right-of-way near the Resthaven gas plant operated by ConocoPhillips Canada.

On June 13, the Alberta Energy Regulator announced an environmental protection order for ConocoPhillips Canada. AER requirements include: containing the release; notifying anyone who may be affected; controlling access to the site; developing a wildlife mitigation plan and remediation plan; collecting water and soil samples from the site for analysis; developing public reports on the company web site; and submitting a final report to AER.

In an update on July 27, ConocoPhillips Canada said that soaker pads continue to be used in small creeks and tributaries. Booms on the Simonette River remain staged, and an inverted weir remains staged at Webb Creek where water flows into the Simonette. Shortly after the spill, a sheen was seen on Webb Creek and the Simonette River.

The cleanup effort has included aerial surveillance, daily walking inspections, and continued skimming at a recently installed central collection sump.

Wildlife deterrents have included installation of fish block nets in Webb Creek and installation of fencing, including a fence around a beaver pond. The spill site is within 5 km of a designated grizzly bear management zone.

Earlier in the cleanup, peat sorbent was spread and recovered in areas with sheen. The company added a night shift for recovery, as socks and pads were removed and replaced on a 4-hr rotation. Waste management is part of the cleanup program.

The condensate spill occurred as several companies were in the midst of dealing with the aftermath of the northern Alberta wildfires that had prompted the largest evacuation in province history (OGJ Online, June 10, 2016).

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