U.S. agency orders Enbridge to dredge Kalamazoo River after huge oil spill

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VANCOUVER - More than two and a half years after a pipeline rupture spilled heavy oil into the Kalamazoo River, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is ordering Calgary-based Enbridge (TSX:ENB) to dredge the river to remove submerged oil.

The agency says it has repeatedly found oil in sections of the river, and it wants that crude removed before it flows downstream to areas where it will be more difficult or even impossible to clean up.

The agency is also ordering Enbridge — proponent of the controversial Northern Gateway pipeline through northern British Columbia — to maintain sediment traps throughout the river to capture oil outside the dredge areas.

EPA documents note that Enbridge challenged the agency's science, and the need to either contain or recover the remaining oil.

The July 2010 spill near Marshall, Michigan, has dogged the company as it proceeds through a federal review of the Northern Gateway to deliver oil sands products to a tanker port in Kitimat, B.C.

The ability to clean-up diluted bitumen from Alberta's oil sands has been raised at the hearings by project opponents.

Organizations: Enbridge, U.S. agency, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency TSX

Geographic location: Kalamazoo River, VANCOUVER, British Columbia Marshall, Michigan Kitimat Alberta

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