Husky pipeline leaks produced water onto wetland

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The Alberta Energy Regulator is on the scene of a pipeline leak in northwest Alberta.

The incident, which affected a Husky Oil pipeline and was discovered on Monday during a daily inspection, took place approximately 15 km southeast of Rainbow Lake. The company — which immediately shut in the pipeline and reported the spill to the AER — says approximately 500,000 litres of produced water was released, though that estimate has yet to be confirmed by the regulator.

Produced water is an industry term for water produced as a byproduct during the extraction of oil or natural gas.

According to the AER, the release was contained to a low-lying wetland and no impacts to wildlife have been reported. The cause of the spill is unknown at this time, and AER staff are on site to ensure Husky is meeting all safety and environmental requirements.

In an email, Husky spokeswoman Dawn Delaney said cleanup efforts are under way, including the use of pumps and vacuum trucks.

“Husky’s first priority is the safety of its people, and the protection of the environment in the communities we operate in,” Delaney said. “We are undertaking a thorough investigation of this incident.”

astephenson@postmedia.com

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