ANCHORAGE, Alaska - The Unified Command, Drift River Terminal Coordination, presents the following information to address the questions about water usage at the terminal in the oil storage tanks.
Questions regarding the use of water instead of oil to keep the tanks grounded in the event of a flood or lahar have been presented to the Unified Command from stake holders and the public. That is not currently a viable option for the following reasons:
- The water supply at the Drift River Oil Terminal does not have the capacity to fill the tanks to the levels necessary to maintain structural integrity. (Approximately four million gallons)
- No system exists to tie the water well to the tanks.
- Once injected into the tanks, the water becomes a hazardous waste and there are no facilities onsite to properly dispose of it.
- We know of no tankers that will take on water into their tanks. Under standard operating procedures, tankers are not configured to transport oily waste in this quantity.
- The Christy Lee is not configured to berth barges at the tanker loading platform.
- Water introduced into the tanks at the Drift River Terminal could result in the shutdown of Cook Inlet oil production for months.
- All other tanks at the Drift River Terminal are out of service.