Did Oil and Gas Companies Obey The Law?

;xSTx;br;xETx;;xNLx;;xSTx;br;xETx;;xNLx;;xNLx;The following is a timeline of internal oil and gas industry documents, as well as laws, legal decisions, and enforcement actions relating to industry activities.;xNLx;;xNLx;In each item, click "More" to read full passage, and "Find Out More" to download original document.;xNLx;

1870-01-01 00:00:00

La. Law of Servitude of Drain

Renders it unlawful to make the flow of water more burdensome.

1899-01-01 00:00:00

U.S. Rivers and Harbors Act

It shall not be lawful for any person to impair the usefulness of any levee built by the United States.

1907-01-21 00:00:00

La. Supreme Court: Oil companies broke the law, damaged the land

"...oil and water flowed over the lands of the plaintiff, killing his trees, destroying his crops and pasturage, and polluting the fresh water..."

1920-03-01 00:00:00

La. Dept. of Conservation Rule 14 re: Conservation of Crude Oil

Fresh water, whether above or below the surface, shall be protected from pollution, whether in drilling or plugging.

1931-03-01 00:00:00

Shell: Facility discharges "unlawful," "killing the timber and vegetation"

"...the salt water has already destroyed approximately 11,500 board feet of timber, for which, in all probability, a damage claim will be made..."

1932-04-12 23:11:12

Industry report: "We are only 'kidding' ourselves" about waste discharges

"...the statutes of several states make it obligatory...to prevent the escape of waste from our properties...It's only a question of time..."

1933-01-01 23:11:12

La. Dept. of Conservation Regs: Protection of Coastal Waters

Prohibits discharge "into the coastal or other waters of the State any waste...which will change the chemical composition of the waters."

1943-01-01 23:11:12

La. Stream Control Commission Amended Rules re: Oil Field Wastes

Prohibits discharge of oil field waste into any body of water if "any beneficial animal or vegetable life in said waters may be destroyed."

1944-10-23 23:11:12

La. Supreme Court: The Texas Company's oil field practices illegal

The company "dispersed such a large quantity of crude oil around their operations that it spread...over these waters for miles."

1947-07-01 23:11:12

La. regulators: 108 citations to oil and gas companies within three months

1947-12-01 23:11:12

The Texas Company claims La. regs illegal, U.S. Supreme Court disagrees

Oil company seeks injunction, saying state regulators could cause it to suffer "immediate and irreparable injury, loss and damage."

1952-07-23 23:11:12

Army Corps Permit: Operators must maintain canals, not damage banks

No "ridges...or deep holes that may...cause injury to navigable channels or to the banks of the waterway shall be left..."

1953-09-15 23:11:12

Regulators call meeting with local industry leaders, oil and gas companies

"Canals that the oil companies have dredged... drain our fresh water out so fast...it kills all our fresh water marsh, and all we had now is gone."

1958-01-20 23:11:12

Magnolia Petroleum re: Canal damage along the coast

"Fresh water marshes in many places along the coast have been changed to salt marshes...Damages on the order of $100,000 could be involved..."

1958-10-31 23:11:12

Magnolia Petroleum: 73 out of 79 leases cited for violations

"I am aware of our present practices in these areas and it is my feeling we will have to make some changes."

1965-02-01 23:11:12

La. Wildlife and Fisheries begins aerial oil and gas field inspections

"The most striking indicator of surface brine discharge in inland oil fields is the trail of dead trees, shrubs, and grasses."

1967-10-16 23:11:12

La. Dept. Of Conservation Amendment to Statewide Order 29-B

Requires that disposal wells have "a casing and cementing program...which would ensure adequate protection of fresh water."

1970-10-04 23:11:12

Petroleum Engineers report: "Pollution Problems in the 'Oil Patch'"

"...a quick shuffle of electric logs in nearly any area will show that the regulations for [well] casings are not being adhered to."

1970-10-05 00:00:00

Humble Oil: "What to do when cited"

"Do not admit blame – personally or on the part of the Company."

1970-10-05 00:00:00

La. regulator: "Over 1,000 citations" in six months

"…human error, carelessness, or total disregard for compliance..."

1972-10-18 02:10:19

U.S. Clean Water Act

Provides a framework for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to create new regulations and issue permits for various oil and gas activities.

1974-07-01 02:10:19

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Regs

Require operators of canals and other oil and gas operations to maintain their structure or work as originally proposed to the Corps.

1980-01-01 02:10:19

La. Dept. of Natural Resources, Coastal Zone Management Division Regs

Requires oil and gas sites to be "cleared, revegetated, detoxified, and otherwise restored as near as practicable to their original condition..."

1980-06-13 22:52:59

Shell Oil: "All of these practices are flagrant violations of the law"

"Vegetation kill is evident around facility pit areas due to oil and saltwater leaks; oil is standing...in surrounding wetland areas..."

1982-01-01 23:11:12

Sun Oil cited for draining "produced water, oil, and grease" into marsh

1984-04-02 14:02:06

Shell Oil: "Flagrant violations" causing "high costs to taxpayers"

"Operators must begin to design and close pits properly or lawsuits will become a severe problem in the future."

1986-01-01 02:10:19

Amendment to Statewide Order 29-B

“...pits which are not to be utilized in the operation of oil and gas...must be permanently closed…within 36 months of...this Amendment.”

1986-03-27 01:10:19

Unocal: "95 such facilities are known to have...contamination problems..."

"An additional 220 facilities are suspected of having such problems."

1987-01-01 00:00:00

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Regs re: Oil and Gas Permits

Permit holder must "maintain the activity authorized by this permit in good condition and in conformance with the terms and conditions of this permit.

1987-01-01 23:11:12

KEDCO Oil fined for "severe damage" to 4,088 acres of wetlands

"...produced water discharges from a pipe protruding from the pit levee..."

1987-08-25 23:11:12

Quintana Petroleum cited after creating "dead area" in the marsh

"...oil leaking from reserve pit...fish flesh probably tainted to taste..."

1989-01-01 23:11:12

Mid-Continent Oil and Gas: Louisiana Environmental Impact Report

"...effects of canal development tend to be the overwhelming cause of wetland losses within the field..."

1999-01-01 00:00:00

State report: 29,726 abandoned oilfield facilities pose threat of oil spill

2013-08-07 13:01:53

C.P.R.A.: "Industrial negligence" contributed to land loss

"...canals and pipelines...criss-crossed South Louisiana...disastrously altering the natural hydrology of the region..."

Did Oil and Gas Companies Obey The Law?

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