Crews cleaned up most of the oil leaked from the Keystone pipeline in Kansas.

The pipeline company, which spilled nearly 600,000 gallons of oil into fields and a river in north-central Kansas, says it has cleaned up more than 85% of its crude oil.

meanwhile, Washington, Kansas newspaper reported that the Keystone pipeline is by far the largest source of tax revenue in the county. Second largest county source of tax revenue? Also a pipeline operator.

TC Energy estimates that 588,000 gallons of crude oil erupted from the Keystone oil pipeline explosion on Dec. 7, the largest spill at a Canadian company’s largest oil pipeline system.

The company says crews have recovered about 516,000 gallons. More than 800 workers are on site, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Much of the work is centered on Mill Creek. Several miles of stream were blocked to facilitate intensive cleaning and localization of contamination.

The state Environmental Protection Agency said last week it was seeing a drop in chemical levels downstream of the isolated section of the stream.

Largest Taxpayers in Washington County

The Washington County News reported Thursday that seven of the county’s top 10 taxpayers are linked to pipelines.

But the revenues from the Keystone pipeline eclipse all others, and they only came into existence recently because the 10-year tax exemption expired.

The district, two school districts and other local governments have collectively received more than $1.9 million in taxes from Keystone this year, according to the newspaper.

The second largest source of tax revenue, another pipeline owned by Northern Natural Gas, paid about $670,000 to local governments in Washington County last year.

Learn more about the Keystone spill in Kansas

Celia Llopis-Jepsen is a news reporter for the Kansas News Service. You can follow her on Twitter @celia_LJ or email her at celia (at) kcur (dot) org.

The Kansas News Service is a collaboration between KCUR, Kansas Public Radio, KMUW, and High Plains Public Radio dedicated to health, social determinants of health, and their relationship to public policy.

Kansas News Service stories and photographs may be published free of charge by the media with proper attribution and a link to ksnewsservice.org.

Copyright 2023 SDG 89.3. To learn more, visit KCUR 89.3.

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