Jul 05

Montana governor questions Exxon on oil’s spread (Reuters, July 3, 2011):

KALISPELL, Montana (Reuters) – Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer on Sunday questioned Exxon Mobil Corp’s contention that its oil pipeline spill into the Yellowstone River was concentrated within a 10-mile area.

Exxon said the spill, which occurred early Saturday near Billings, Montana, released into the river between 750 and 1,000 barrels of oil, which equals up to 42,000 gallons.

The company also has said the spill appeared to be concentrated within a 10-mile stretch of the river between Billings and the nearby town of Laurel.

But Schweitzer said the oil’s spread in the Yellowstone — which is the longest undammed river in the United States — could be more extensive.

“This is a lot of wild country, and they haven’t any idea whether it’s 5 miles, 50 miles or 100 miles, they’re guessing,” Schweitzer, a Democrat, told Reuters in a telephone interview.

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