Montana to Confirm No Oil Left From 2011 Yellowstone Spill

December 16, 2014

Montana environmental officials are asking the public whether any crude oil from a 2011 spill into the Yellowstone River is still present in the soil.

The Billings Gazette reported Friday the state Department of Environmental Quality wants the information before issuing a letter to Exxon Mobil Corp. saying no further cleanup work is needed.

An Exxon Mobil pipeline broke near Laurel during flooding in July 2011, releasing 63,000 gallons of oil that washed up along an 85-mile stretch of riverbank.

State officials are concerned that oil could have been trapped by sediment and debris and settled into the riverbed.

Exxon Mobil is facing state and federal fines of up to $3.4 million from the spill. The company has said it spent $135 million on the cleanup and other work.

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