BP Doubles Its Initial Estimate On How Much Oil Spilled Into Lake Michigan Monday

Around 4:30 p.m. Monday afternoon, refinery workers at a BP refinery on Lake Michigan reported an oily sheen on the surface of the lake.

After reporting yesterday that only 18 barrels had spilled, BP today changed the number to 39, more than doubling the initial estimate. If you’re wondering, 39 barrels is the equal to 1,638 gallons of oil (42 gallons/barrel).

In July of 2013, the refinery underwent a $4 billion overhaul to increase the amount of heavy Canadian tar sands it processes.

Although the lake provides drinking water for 7 million residents in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs, BP insists the spill will have no significant impact on water quality.

The EPA is conducting an investigation into whether or not BP violated the federal Clean Water Act but declined to comment on BP’s raised estimates.

Read more from the Chicago Tribune here.


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