For a brief but thorough introduction to tar sands and tar sands pipelines, see 350 Madison’s tar sands primer.
The weekend of October 27–29, 2017, environmentalists, landowners, tribal members, climate activists, young people, and other concerned community members came together at People Over Pipelines: Protecting Our Homes and Water in Marshfield, WI, to learn about the impacts of Enbridge’s potential Line 66. Here’s a six-minute video recap of the weekend event:
If you want a quick overview of the Wisconsin tar sands fight, check out this excellent webinar, Wisconsin Pipeline Invasion 101…
… and this outstanding video, Enbridge Tar Sands Pipelines of Wisconsin.
Dan Egan puts Enbridge’s expansion plans for Wisconsin in the context of North American fossil fuel transport and resistance in Part One of an outstanding Milwaukee Journal Sentinel series titled “Oil and Water”; Part Two is an in-depth look at the threat Enbridge’s Line 5 poses to the Great Lakes; Part Three analyzes the impact the decommissioning of Line 5 would have, including possible rerouting of the oil flow through Wisconsin; and Part Four discusses how the change in the eminent domain laws by the Wisconsin Legislature paved the way for possible Enbridge expansion. The series introduction shows pipeline expansion on a map of the continent.
A superb primer on Enbridge and tar sands can be found here. You can learn more about the threat posed by the entire Enbridge system of pipelines (the Enbridge “GXL System”) here. For more on the Kalamazoo River disaster and the hazards of diluted bitumen, see the Pulitzer Prize–winning The Dilbit Disaster: Inside the Biggest Oil Spill You’ve Never Heard Of and a 2013 update, The Dilbit Disaster 3 Years Later: Sunken Oil Is Looming Threat to Kalamazoo River.
The map below gives a sense of the grave risks involved in transporting oil. The map shows the 1,000+ crude oil leaks and ruptures reported to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) from January 2010 to May 2015. Not included are spills unrelated to pipelines, such as the catastrophic BP Deepwater Horizon spill of 2010. Click the icon at top left for an explanatory legend.
Source: Jonathan Thompson, “Mapping 7 million gallons of crude oil spills,” High Country News, June 15, 2015.
And for another illustration… the animation below shows pipeline spills (some 8,700) over the past 30 years.
Source: Nitin Gadia, “The Dakota Access Pipeline Threat: By the Numbers,” Indian Country Today, May 25, 2017.