Department of Environmental Quality sees declines in oil industry issues

Published: Jan. 3, 2020 at 9:42 PM CST
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The Department of Environmental Quality says they've seen a decline in oil industry issues since 2013.

They don't handle all oil spills, they split jurisdiction with the Department of Mineral Resources. They've seen a decline of more than 30 cases per year, and millions less in fines since 2013. Though it spiked in 2017.

"Designs are getting better, the companies are beginning to understand what's expected of them, and that we also have field inspectors that will go out and follow, if there's a report of a spill, that we will follow up on that and make sure on that it wasn't bigger than they've identified," said David Glatt, director.

The director says that it isn't about bringing in money for the state, instead encouraging better protection of the environment.

They allow companies to pay up to half of their fines on environmental improvement projects.