[8/12/19] Oil Spills Threaten Snake & Columbia Rivers

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Up to 300 gallons of oil may have leaked into the Snake River from a power-generating turbine at Lower Monumental Dam. The Army Corps of Engineers reported the suspected spill this week, but it’s unclear when it happened. The Army Corps disclosed the incident to regulators and the environmental group Columbia Riverkeeper under the terms of a 2014 settlement agreement. Columbia Riverkeeper had sued to stop oil releases from the eight dams on the lower Snake and Columbia rivers.

The group issued a statement calling the most recent disclosure the latest in a series of spills that highlight the threat posed by the four aging Snake River dams.

The Corps reported that 200 to 300 gallons of unspecified “turbine oil” may have leaked from a turbine shaft at Lower Monumental Dam.