Governor Doug Burgum today announced the completion of a new, streamlined system that will provide a one-stop shop for energy industry producers, transporters and developers, as well as the public, to report material spills and releases. dangerous.
The planning process for the project began in 2018 as a joint effort led by the North Dakota Department of Emergency Services and supported by the North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of North Dakota Agriculture and the Oil and Gas Division of the North Dakota Industrial Commission. In January 2020, the HazConnect reporting platform developer was awarded a state contract to begin work on the functionality and design of the project.
“This streamlined system provides producers and the public with a single option to report hazardous material spills instead of having to report spills to multiple state agencies, improving state response and transparency in the event of a spill,” said Burgum, who announced the system during its annual report. State of the state address. “Through increased collaboration and unified reporting, our state agencies are now better prepared to protect North Dakota’s water, air, and soil.”
According to state and federal law, a spill/release must be reported within 24 hours of the incident to the North Dakota agencies responsible for spill remediation and documentation. However, 9-1-1 should be called if there is an immediate spill/release emergency, including:
- Any spill/discharge with an actual or potential impact on public health, including:
- Injured or dead.
- Evacuations, or whether there is potential for further evacuations.
- Waterways or wildlife affected or threatened.
Prior to the implementation of the reporting system, state agency officials launched an outreach campaign to inform industry stakeholders of the new platform and to provide training for those who wished to participate. A series of training videos will also be posted on the spill.nd.gov website for users to refer to.
“Using a whole-of-government approach, we have developed a reporting system that will help North Dakota respond more effectively and mitigate the impacts of unplanned spills,” said Cody Schulz, director of North Dakota Homeland Security. “We’ve also strengthened our response capabilities by partnering with energy industry groups, educating them about state reporting requirements, and giving them the tools and training to report accurately. “
Through the reporting system, state agencies can capture and archive information that can be used to better protect the people of North Dakota. The data can bolster mitigation strategies and be used to train emergency responders to better understand hazardous incidents that may have occurred in their districts. It can also help communities plan for potential environmental issues using real historical data from their areas.