A Louisiana pipeline dredged by the United States Army Corps of Engineers in the Mississippi River in 2018 has been found to be structurally deficient and could not be safely removed from the river, the Army Corps said.
A joint project with Louisiana State University and the Mississippi Bureau of Reclamation has been scheduled to start drilling on the project’s northern edge in 2019, but the corps has not yet given a date to move forward.
The project would have drilled a 5-mile pipeline that would have transported oil from the Gulf of Mexico to a terminal on the Gulf Coast, but it has not been built.
The Louisiana Department of Natural Resources has said it was the work of contractors hired to dredge a portion of the river.
“It’s a huge, big project, and I don’t want to make any promises.
But if we can find out that the work was done properly, then we’ll start moving forward with it,” Louisiana Gov.
John Bel Edwards told reporters Tuesday.
“We’ve got to figure out what the next step is going to be.
But it’s going to take some time.
I’ve got a lot of faith in the corps.”
The pipeline would have carried oil from Gulf of California refineries to a refinery on the Louisiana coast, where it would be processed to extract oil from shale deposits.
The project was proposed in 2008 and eventually won approval from the U.S. Army Corps.
The corps said in 2016 it would drill a second segment of the pipeline to transport oil from Louisiana to the Gulf.
But the project was cancelled after federal officials determined that the pipeline would need to be replaced if it were to be built.
Louisiana officials have said the project would save the state $60 million per year in maintenance costs, and the corps said the pipeline was not built to withstand the high volume of oil that would be transported.