Crews Dig Through Mo. to Build Flanagan South Pipeline

3 years 11 months 2 weeks ago Friday, November 01 2013 Nov 1, 2013 Friday, November 01, 2013 2:39:00 PM CDT November 01, 2013 in News
By: Nick Thompson, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

JOHNSON COUNTY - Thousands of workers are digging trenches in rural Missouri to build a pipeline that will carry thousands of barrels of Canadian crude oil through the Show-Me State.

Enbridge, a Canadian energy transportation company, is constructing the Flanagan South pipeline to carry the crude oil from the "oil sands region" of Alberta to refineries in the Midwest and Gulf Coast regions in the U.S. The Flanagan South pipeline travels in a northeast to southwest trajectory from Flanagan, Ill. to Cushing, Okla. In Flanagan, it connects with existing pipelines that run northwest to the oil sands. Enbridge began construction on Flanagan South in mid-August after the company finished two years of negotiations with landowners. Enbridge also got approval from several state and federal agencies, including the U.S. Army Corps. of Engineers.

Flanagan South will cross through 11 Missouri counties when crews finish work, including Randolph, Macon, Shelby and Saline counties. The pipeline will be able to carry more than 600,000 barrels of oil per day when it is finished. Flanagan South will be built parallel to the Spearhead pipeline, which is also owned by Enbridge. Sinclair built the Spearhead pipeline in the 1950s and it currently carries 175,000 barrels per day.

Thousands of workers head out each day to the "spreads," or streches of pipeline construction. In Missouri, one spread is based in Johnson County near Warrensburg and the other works out of Randolph County, near Moberly. Crews work long days and are able to lay more than one mile of pipeline each day.

After surveying the area, crews dig out the topsoil to form a trench. Crews then bend and weld sections of pipe to follow the contours of the land. After crews place the pipe into the ground, they cover the trench with topsoil.

The pipeline will eventually carry diluted bitumen, known as "dilbit." The raw product found in the Candian oil sands is called bitumen and it does not flow in its natural state. Bitumen is refined to extract the sand, which forms dilbit, a product that is less dense and can flow through a pipeline.

Nearly 1,000 workers set out each day on each spread and Enbridge said the workers spend money in communities along the right-of-way and generate an economic boost.

David Gaines, the President of the Moberly Area Economic Development Corporation, said the influx of workers has generated an economic "shot in the arm" for the region. 

"It is millions of dollars of payroll in the multi-county region that had not been there this time before," Gaines said. "So as a result we're seeing folks shopping in our grocery stores, our retail stores and our laundromats. So it has been very good for a lot of people in the area."

Enbridge expects the project to generate $25 million in sales tax revenue for Missouri.

The company using the services of several contractors, including Texas-based U.S. pipeline. The company said those contractors have agreements with local unions and hundreds of the pipeline workers are local hires.

Although the pipeline is providing a short-term economic boost, environmental groups oppose the construction.

Heather Navarro, executive director of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment, said Missourians will be left with volatile infrastructure that will receive only occasional monitoring from the company. Enbridge expects Flanagan South to generate 2 permanent jobs in Missouri.

An Enbridge pipeline spill in Michigan in 2010 caused 1.1 million gallons of crude to pour into streams. The company has spent $750 million in recent years trying to clean up the mess.

Navarro said the company does not have a good record and said communities may not be adequately prepared to handle an emergency.

Flanangan South received approval from the U.S. Army Corps. of Engineers through a process known as a Nationwide 12 permit. The nationwide permit process does not require public comment and is an expedited approval process because it is completed with the understanding a project will have a minimal environmental impact.

Henry Robertson works as an attorney for Great Rivers Environmental Law Center and filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment against the Corps. Robertson said the Corps. did not provide the information he requested under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Robertson said the Corps. treated each stream crossing as a separate project instead of looking at the pipeline's environmental impact in its entirety.

"When you add the whole thing up, 2,000 stream crossings and 600 miles of pipeline, That's not a minimal project," Robertson said. "That's a major project and that should be subject to stricter regulation and a little public scrutiny."

Robertson said he hopes he can get documents from the Corps. to explain how the project was approved, but he said he knows he cannot stop the construction at this point.

Although the pipeline has received some opposition from environmental groups, Enbridge spokeswoman Lara Burhenn said many Missourians have embraced the project and realize it is important to American energy independence.

"We're getting this crude from a North American source which is helping us not rely on those more volatile sources from overseas," Burhenn said. "Consumers understand there's a larger demand and therefore the need for this additional infrastructure."

Enbridge expects to complete the pipeline in mid-2014.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA- Missouri and Kansas will play a friendly version of their 'Border War' rivalry for the first time since 2012.... More >>
1 hour ago Sunday, October 22 2017 Oct 22, 2017 Sunday, October 22, 2017 6:56:00 AM CDT October 22, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - An armed robbery occurred Saturday night at an O’Reilly Auto Parts store on Cooper Drive. CPD officers... More >>
10 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 10:10:35 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - One man was taken to a local hospital for a gunshot wound received Saturday night. CPD officers... More >>
10 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 9:56:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
NEW FRANKLIN - The Missouri River Relief organized about 250 volunteers Saturday to remove trash from the Missouri River as... More >>
13 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 7:38:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Officers responded to reports of shots fired at about 6:00 p.m. Saturday at the McDonald's Restaurant on Stadium... More >>
13 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 7:36:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
BOONE COUNTY – Four people were injured in a three-vehicle collision at Obermiller Road Saturday afternoon according to a sergeant... More >>
14 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 6:24:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
FULTON - Dozens of trucks raced though the mud to raise money for the Central Missouri Honor Flight Saturday at... More >>
14 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 5:48:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The state no longer will make children in foster care pay a $15 fee to get... More >>
15 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 4:56:46 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
HOLTS SUMMIT- New bike lines were painted in Holts Summit Thursday to make cycling safer and more accessible. The... More >>
16 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:49:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- Local entrepreneurs walked away with some cash Saturday after an annual pitch off competition. The sixth annual... More >>
16 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:42:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis public school district is suing 32 teachers for breaking their contracts by leaving... More >>
17 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:35:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri Museum of Art and Archaeology hosted an explorative event on Saturday for International Archaeology... More >>
17 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:23:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A St. Louis Community College professor was grabbed from behind by an officer, pulled to the... More >>
19 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 1:33:18 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
MOBERLY - The Missouri Association of Student Financial Aid Personnel (MASFAP) is celebrating 50 years of providing greater access to... More >>
19 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 1:09:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Kansas City's efforts to obtain $40 million in federal funding to replace an important bridge are... More >>
21 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 10:43:44 AM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Center Project, mid-Missouri's LGBTQ community center, will provide free health care and behavioral health services Saturday to... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 7:20:00 AM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Local charity Pink Pursuit raises money to provide mammograms on a van that travels across Missouri. "I... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:25:00 AM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Boone and Callaway County has a new circuit judge. Judge J. Hasbrouck “Brouck” Jacobs will preside over... More >>
1 day ago Friday, October 20 2017 Oct 20, 2017 Friday, October 20, 2017 8:04:00 PM CDT October 20, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 54°
9am 51°
10am 53°
11am 54°
12pm 55°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

8:00a
Sunday TODAY with Willie Geist
9:00a
Meet the Press
10:00a
Give
8:30a
The Key of David
9:00a
Campmeeting
10:00a
Discover the Truth

Tonight's Schedule

6:00p
Football Night in America
7:20p
Sunday Night Football
7:00p
Twisted
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Family Guy