Archive for August 9th, 2011


Cleanup on Blackfeet Reservation half done

   Posted by: buffalo_post    in Blackfeet, Oil and gas

Crews are still working to cleanup the area along Cut Bank Creek on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation in northwest Montana where oil spilled almost a month ago.

The Great Falls Tribune reports that soil and water contaminated with oil is being hauled off the area where 20 barrels of oil spilled.

A faulty pipe on land leased by FX Energy of Salt Lake City caused the spill, which was originally unreported. Any where from 420 to 840 gallons were leaked and as of Aug. 7 only half had been cleaned up.

    So far, 13 55-gallon drums have been filled with oil and water, and contaminated soil filled up 18 nylon tote bags that each have a capacity of 2,000 pounds.

    One of the key challenges of the project was moving the heavy barrels and bags out of the ravine.

Also in the story, the Tribune reported the spill might change how the Blackfeet manage their oil leases.

    Don Judice of the BLM, which regulates oil and gas activity on the reservation, said the agency is evaluating the possibility of requiring FX, and other companies operating on the reservation, to replace old collector lines. The BLM has sent the company a notice of violation for not reporting the leak.

    Officials with the BLM, Environmental Protection Agency and Bureau of Indian Affairs will participate in a final inspection of the cleanup to make sure the oil is recovered and the environment protected, he said.

Jenna Cederberg

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Tia Gibbs, posing with children at the Nixyaawii Community School on the reservation, said the visit was "breathtaking, especially learning so much that I was clueless about." (By Jaime Valdez, Special to the Courier-Journal)

University of Louisville women’s basketball team made a special visit to the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Oregon this month.

With them of course, were Shoni and Jude Schimmel, who grew up on the Umatilla Reservation and became well-known after being the subjects of a basketball documentary “Off the Rez.” Both are signed to play with UL.

The Courier-Journal had the story:

    The Cardinals, who are on an 11-day trip that will culminate in three games against Canadian competition, flew from Louisville to Portland on Thursday and then bused to the reservation near Pendleton for a two-day stay.

Players and coaches alike agreed it was an eye-opening, once-in-a-lifetime experience as they visited museums and signed autographs for hundreds of Umatilla youth. Shoni and Jude were also fans of the visit.

    “Just coming out here means a lot, especially with all my teammates here,” Shoni said. “It’s an awesome feeling because you’re in your own hometown with your teammates. It’s just awesome to be able to be here with them, especially with all the young kids coming out and coming to see us and hanging out with us.”

Jenna Cederberg