Conservation advocates voice fears about oil pipeline

02-10-2012 // Dennis Hoey - The Portland Press Herald

This excerpt is from The Portland Press Herald

A pipeline accident that allows oil to get into Sebago Lake could contaminate the water supply for thousands of southern Maine residents, a panel of state and national conservation advocates said Thursday night.

More than 200 people turned out for a presentation on the Portland campus of the University of Southern Maine, indicating the interest that the prospect of piping "tar sands" crude oil into Portland has generated.

The evening presentation followed a morning news conference aimed at raising awareness about the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, which would cut across the heart of the nation, and the potential for a similar operation between Montreal and Portland.


Jim Murphy, a senior counsel for the National Wildlife Foundation, said the Keystone pipeline's projected lifespan is 50 years. Portland's pipeline is already much older than that.

"There is reason to be very nervous about putting this corrosive substance through such an old pipeline," Murphy said.

Voorhees said Thursday's news conference and meeting were held to raise public awareness and to bring pressure on Maine's U.S. senators, who may vote on the Keystone pipeline legislation as early as next week.

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