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UPDATE 1-Oil and chemical spills from Hurricane Harvey big, but dwarfed by Katrina

From Reuters - September 15, 2017

NEW YORK/BOSTON (Reuters) - More than 22,000 barrels of oil, refined fuels and chemicals spilled at sites across Texas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, along with millions of cubic feet of natural gas and hundreds of tons of other toxic substances, a Reuters review of company reports to the U.S. Coast Guard shows.

The spills, clustered around the heart of the U.S. oil industry, together rank among the worst environmental mishaps in the country in years, but fall far short of the roughly 190,000 barrels spilled in Louisiana in 2005 after Hurricane Katrina - the last major storm to take dead aim at the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Harvey slammed ashore in Texas on Aug. 26, unleashing record flooding around Houston that destroyed countless homes, displaced around a million people and killed scores.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency warned people affected by the storm to avoid floodwaters, saying they could contain bacteria and other dangerous substances, but the agency has so far provided few details about spills. The EPA said earlier this week it was responding to more than a dozen spills in the wake of Harvey, but said it could not immediately providevolume estimates.

The U.S. Coast Guard reports showed over 22,000 barrels of crude oil, gasoline, diesel, drilling wastewater, and petrochemicals spilled from refineries, storage terminals and other facilities in the days after the storm.

Nearly half of those came from a 10,988-barrel spill of unleaded gasoline from Magellan Midstream Partners storage facility (MMP.N) in Galena Park, Texas, according to the reports, confirmed by a company official.

We expect clean-up operations to be completed within a few weeks, the company said in an email on Thursday. Most of the gasoline had been removed, it said, including quantities that spilled offsite and into the Houston Ship Channel, and remaining work was mainly focused on removing contaminated soil.

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