Environmentalist say Portland pipeline getting old

9:26 AM, Mar 13, 2014   |    comments
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PORTLAND, Maine (AP) -- An environmental group says one of the two pipelines from Portland to Montreal has surpassed its life expectancy, based on court documents filed in a tax dispute in New Hampshire.

Owners of the Portland Pipe Line agreed with a 60-year lifespan assessment for purposes of a tax case in the 1990s. The National Wildlife Federation says that based on records from that court case that an 18-inch pipeline built in 1950 is four years beyond its anticipated service life.

Environmentalists fear that pipeline, which is idle, could be used to bring so-called tar sands oil from Canada.

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration says pipelines can last indefinitely if properly maintained. And the company says there's no plan to reverse the flow, allowing Canadian oil to flow to Portland.

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