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Oil spill stopped from reaching tributary on Navajo Nation

Up to 80 barrels of brine water spilled earlier this month in Red Valley, located near the Arizona-New Mexico border.

NAVAJO COUNTY, Ariz. — An oil spill has been stopped from reaching a tributary to the San Juan River and clean-up work continues at Standing Redrock Creek, Navajo Nation officials said Wednesday.

They said the Capitol Operating Group had a release from a corroded pipeline between the salt water tank and an injection well located in Red Valley on Aug. 7. and up to 80 barrels of brine water was released.

Tribal officials said the brine water contained oil, brine, and saltwater and the release traveled over three miles through an unnamed drainage to the Standing Redrock Creek.

“We continue to monitor the situation together and we will continue to hold the responsible party, the Capital Group, accountable and ensure that they provide the highest level of remediation as a result of the spill that occurred,” Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said in a statement.

Tribal officials said the remediation is expected to continue into next week and includes replacing the pipeline, treating the release site and unnamed drainage and collecting the contaminated soil in the creek bed.

They said berms and additional absorbent pads have been placed throughout the creek to collect any runoff from monsoon rains.

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