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Governor's First Oil Pipeline Safety Council Meeting Aug. 3

Press Release

Location: Helena, MT

The Oil Pipeline Safety Council created by Governor Brian Schweitzer will hold its first meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2011, from 9:00 -- 10:30 a.m. in Room 111 at the Montana Department of Environmental Quality headquarters, located at 1520 E. Sixth Ave. in Helena. The Council will accept public comment during the meeting.

The council, made up of the directors from the Montana Department of Environmental Quality, Department of Natural Resources and Conservation and Department of Transportation, will develop its work plan to collect a broad range of information on the status of all existing oil pipelines crossing under Montana rivers and streams.

"Montana is the nation's headwater state, home to world-class rivers and streams with water that is part of our livelihoods. We must ensure accurate and up-to-date information on all oil pipelines under all our rivers and streams," said Governor Schweitzer. "It is clear after this tragic incident that additional oversight beyond federal regulators is needed to determine the location, age, condition, burial depth and other relevant factors to maintain oil pipeline safety."

After gathering all relevant information, the Safety Council will advise Governor Schweitzer on the potential risks for leaks and breaks in other pipeline crossings around the state, and will make recommendations for preventing future failures.

Governor Schweitzer established the Oil Pipeline Safety Council by Executive Order on July 20, 2011, following the July 1 rupture of an Exxon-Mobil oil pipeline that sent over 1,000 barrels of crude oil into the Yellowstone River. The council will exist for one year.

Reasonable accommodations will be made for persons with disabilities who wish to attend this meeting. If you require an accommodation, please contact Lisa Peterson at or (406) 444-2929.

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