Over the past twenty years, the Colonial Pipeline that runs through Greensboro, NC has been owned jointly by up to ten oil companies, including a branch of Koch Industries. At one point Koch Industries was the largest owners of the pipeline, which has a despicable record when it comes to protecting the surrounding land and water.
Between 1996 and 2000, multiple spills of fuels like gasoline and kerosene occurred around Greensboro, including two major spills in May 1996 and May 2000. In 1996, 50 gallons of gasoline were spilled into a creek and shoreline near Greensboro, which wasn’t properly reported at the time. Then, almost exactly four years later, a significantly larger spill of 714 gallons of kerosene occurred in a pond that flowed into the East Fork Deep River.
These environmentally damaging accidents led to Colonial Pipeline paying a $34 million court settlement. As of 2012, Koch Industries owned 20% of the Colonial Pipeline. What will they do now to keep Triad area families safe from this path of destruction?
Koch Industries Owned Share Of A Pipeline That Spilled Oil Into The Deep River In 2000
Koch Industries Owned A Percentage Of The Colonial Pipeline
In 1994, Colonial Pipeline Was Owned By 10 Oil Companies, Including Koch. According to the Houston Chronicle, “Colonial Pipeline Co. is owned jointly by 10 oil companies: Unocal, Amoco, Texaco, Citgo, Mobil, Conoco, Phillips, Koch, Marathon and Arco.” [Houston Chronicle, 10/21/94]
In 2002, Koch Became The Largest Shareholder Of Colonial Pipeline Co. According to Wichita Business Journal, “Koch Business Holdings LLC, a subsidiary of Wichita-based Koch Industries Inc., agreed Friday, Nov. 1 to purchase a 17.97 percent ownership in Colonial Pipeline Co. from BP America. With the acquisition, which is subject to regulatory approval, Koch Business Holdings will own 25.27 percent of Colonial Pipeline’s shares, making it the largest shareholder in the company.” [Wichita Business Journal, 11/2/02]
In 2012, Koch Industries Owned A 20% Interest In The 5,500 Mile Long Colonial Pipeline. According to Forbes, “Koch Industries Estimated 2012 revenue: $115 billion Estimated 2012 earnings before taxes and depreciation: $11 billion […] Pipelines 4,000 miles of pipelines and terminals, plus a 20% interest in the 5,500-mile Colonial Pipeline Co.” [Forbes, 12/24/12]
Colonial Pipeline Ran From Houston Area To New York Harbor And Delivered 95 Million Gallons Of Oil And Gas A Day. According to the Associated Press, “Colonial Pipeline delivers a daily average of 95 million gallons of gasoline, diesel fuel, home heating oil and aviation and military fuels through its 5,519 mile pipeline stretching from the Houston area to the New York harbor.” [Associated Press, 11/2/02]
Colonial Pipeline Ran Under Greensboro
Colonial Pipeline Ran Under Greensboro, North Carolina. According to the Greensboro News & Record, “But the lingering pollution beside this pleasant, suburban street illustrates the downside of Greensboro’s prominent role in the nation’s vital network of fuel pipelines. The city acts as a major juncture for both the multistate Plantation and Colonial pipeline systems, privately owned competitors that run large-scale tank farms near Piedmont Triad International Airport amid intricate networks that serve millions of consumers.” [Greensboro News & Record, 5/5/13]
Colonial Pipeline Was Three To Six Feet Underground For Much Of Guilford County. According to the Greensboro News & Record, “The two pipelines travel side by side, 3 to 6 feet underground through a big chunk of Guilford County, burrowing underneath High Point’s Oak Hollow water-supply lake in two places and bordering very close to Lake Brandt before going their separate ways to Washington, New York City, Roanoke, Va., and many points in between.” [News & Record, 5/5/13]
Oil Spilled Into The East Fork Deep River In 2000, Resulting In A $34 Million Settlement
In 1996 And 2000, Colonial Pipeline Spilled 754 Gallons Of Fuel Into The Deep River And An Unnamed Creek. According to the Greensboro News & Record, “Colonial Pipeline officials acknowledge today that they operated through much of the 1990s without proper respect for the environment. The era culminated in a $34 million court settlement that Colonial paid for violating the Clean Water Act after a series of spills between 1996 and 2000, including two events in Greensboro that spilled a total of 754 gallons of fuel into the east fork of the Deep River and another unnamed creek.” [News & Record, 5/5/13]
In 2000, 17 Barrels Of Kerosene Spilled Into A Pond That Flowed Into The East Fork Deep River In Greensboro. According to the EPA, “Greensboro, East Fork Deep River, North Carolina: At least 714 gallons (17 barrels) of kerosene spilled, some of which entered a pond that flows into a tributary of the East Fork Deep River in Greensboro around May 19, 2000. The kerosene spill caused a sheen about 40 feet by 40 feet in the pond.” [EPA, Viewed 3/31/14]
In 1996, 1.2 Barrels Of Gasoline Spilled Into An Unnamed Creek In Greensboro. According to the EPA, “Greensboro, North Carolina: Approximately 50 gallons (1.2 barrels) of gasoline spilled, some of which entered an unnamed creek and adjoining shoreline in Greensboro, N.C., around May 17, 1996.” [EPA, Viewed 3/31/14]
Colonial Pipeline Put New Measures In Place For Safety After The Incidents In The 1990s. According to the Greensboro News & Record, “The company instituted rules giving all employees the power and responsibility to stop the whole system if they reasonably suspect something’s amiss, Baker said. Company training put added stress on environmental stewardship and safety measures. Colonial’s system wide spending on measures to protect the environment rose to $100 million last year, he said.” [News & Record, 5/5/13]
Colonial Pipeline Paid $34 Million Court Settlement For Spill. According to the Greensboro News & Record, “The era culminated in a $34 million court settlement that Colonial paid for violating the Clean Water Act after a series of spills between 1996 and 2000, including two events in Greensboro that spilled a total of 754 gallons of fuel into the east fork of the Deep River and another unnamed creek.” [News & Record, 5/5/13]