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Posted Tue Dec 14 2010: from Edmunton Journal:
Mystery under our feet troubling of Shell Canada's open pit mines in the oilsands...has sprung a leak at the bottom -- but instead of water running out, it's running in. Ever since October, brackish water from an underground source has been pouring into the bottom of the open mine like water filling a bathtub up through the drain hole. Shell initially dumped dirt into the leak as a sort of stopper but the water kept coming. And it's still coming, gradually filling up the pit that at its mouth is 400 metres by 400 metres. Shell officials have built a higher earthen wall around the pit and expect that in the coming months the water pressure will equalize and the leak will stop before it overflows...what's troubling here -- and why you should care about a watery mine pit in a remote part of northeastern Alberta -- is that experts don't know where the water came from, how much has flowed into the pit or how they can stop it.That's troubling because it demonstrates how little we know about the water under our feet. We don't know much about underground sources of drinking water and we know even less about the vast underground aquifers of salt water where we hope one day to dump vast amounts of carbon dioxide via carbon capture and sequestration (CCS).
[Read more stories about: carbon sequestration, contamination, ecosystem interrelationships, toxic leak]
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'Doc Michael says:
Why, this sounds like a cute little BP blowout!

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