Earlier this week a ruptured oil pipeline was discovered in Belfield, North Dakota. The pipeline has leaked 4,200 barrels of crude oil from the Belle Fourche Pipeline on a hillside above the Ash Coulee Creek. About 3,100 barrels of oil have contaminated the water thus far, said Bill Seuss, program manager for the North Dakota Department of Health.
Allegedly, as a result of the pipeline spill, two cows were found dead near Ash Coulee Creek.
According to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, The leak was first discovered on Dec. 5. The spill happened 150 miles west of the Standing Rock DAPL protest camp.
Incidents like this and many other oil spills in North Dakota are why The Sioux Tribe, environmentalists and supporters from around the world are speaking out against the DAPL. The water and land near the DAPL is sacred to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe who are known as the water protectors.
The oil spill happened about 18 miles from the Little Missouri River, which then feeds the Missouri, a major drinking water source, Seuss said.
The water in Coulee Creek has frozen over as a result of frigid temperatures, the frozen water is slowing down the crude oil before it makes it to the Little Missouri River to contaminate the drinking water there.
According to PHMSA data, The Belle Fourche Pipeline Company has reported 12 pipeline leaks since 2010. In 2011, the company reported two major leaks, one that spilled more than 1,900 barrels of refined products Campbell County, Wyoming, and another that leaked 1,000 barrels of crude in McKenzie County, North Dakota.