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Remaining Drift River oil to be removed 29 April 2009

Posted by admin in Alaska, eruptions, natural hazards, Redoubt, United States.
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The Drift River Oil Terminal, the oil storage facility unwisely situated at the foot of Mount Redoubt, is to be drained of the remainder of its oil.

Around 3.7 million gallons of oil was removed on 7 April, leaving about 2.5 million gallons, mixed with water, still in the tanks. A tanker will arrive at the terminal today to receive the remaining contents of the tanks. The transfer process is expected to take 48 hours. When the transfer is completed, water will be pumped in to stabilize the tanks. There are no plans to clean the tanks, because the site is too dangerous for people to be on site for the length of time the cleaning would take. ‘We are not prepared at this time to put our people on the ground for that duration whilst the volcano remains active’, said Rod Ficken, vice-president of Cook Inlet Pipeline Company, in a sentence impressively packed with redundant phraseology.

The committee overseeing operations at the terminal announced on 21 April that it would not be re-opening any time soon.

For clear evidence from satellite images of just how vulnerable the current location of the Drift River Oil Terminal is, take a look at these images at the Cook Inletkeeper site.

Redoubt itself is still at Orange/Watch status, and is busily building its lava dome which, wreathed in steam, is now very prominent and well-defined (see picture below).

Redoubt lava dome, 28 April 2009 (photographer Game McGimsey, AVO/USGS image)
The lava dome growing in the summit crater of Redoubt volcano since April 4 covers the entire crater floor. Roiling, steaming water is ponded along the south and east margins of the dome. This view is from the south. Photographer Game McGimsey, image courtesy AVO/USGS. [source]

For all our Redoubt coverage: Redoubt « The Volcanism Blog.

News
Oil to be removed from tank farm near volcano – KTUU, 21 April 2009
Oil to be removed from tank farm near volcanoBusiness Week, 21 April 2009
More oil pulled from Drift River tanks – KTVA, 29 April 2009

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Redoubt – summary information for Redoubt (1103-03-)
Alaska Volcano Observatory – Redoubt – AVO information and updates for Redoubt
Alaska Volcano Observatory – main page for the AVO

The Volcanism Blog