20 Mar '13, 6pm

Massive Louisiana sinkhole caused by oil industry just keeps on growing

On Wings of Care The oil-sheen-coated sinkhole, photographed over the weekend by nonprofit On Wings of Care. A sinkhole triggered in Louisiana by the fossil fuel industry grew to 12 acres over the weekend, and it appears that hundreds of displaced nearby residents will never be able to return to their homes. The sinkhole has been growing since it appeared in August. It was caused by a salt mining operation that sucked brine out from beneath the Assumption Parish marsh and piped it to nearby petrochemical facilities. Houston-based Texas Brine had apparently excavated too close to the surface, and officials are worried that a similar fate could befall another Texas Brine salt mining site nearby. Salt is used by the oil industry to stabilize the earth around drilled wells. Emptied salt domes are also used to store oil, gas, and other petrochemicals. Natural gas is belching ou...

Full article: http://grist.org/news/massive-louisiana-sinkhole-caused-b...

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