INSTITUTE INDEX: The Colonial Pipeline Co.'s long history of environmental disasters

A patch of Cahaba lilies in the Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge, which is located a few miles downstream from the Colonial Pipeline's gasoline spill in Alabama. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service photo via Flickr.)

Date on which a mining inspector in Alabama's Shelby County detected a gasoline odor on mining property, leading to the discovery of a leak from the 53-year-old Colonial Pipeline, which carries refined petroleum products from Houston to New Jersey: 9/9/2016

Estimated gallons of gasoline that spilled in what regulators called an "unusually sensitive ecological area": up to 336,000

Miles the spill site is from the Cahaba River, one of the most biologically diverse in the U.S. and a drinking-water source for over a million people: 1

Number of species that are found only in the Cahaba River, which is also home to the largest known patch of Cahaba lilies, flowers that grow in shallow, fast-moving water and are already threatened by dam construction: 13

Days after the leak was discovered that pipeline workers were unable to access the site because of benzene and gasoline vapor levels that exceeded U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration standards: more than 3

Number of containment ponds the spill has now spread to: 2

Percent of the East Coast's gasoline supplied by the pipeline, with its shutdown leading governors of six states to declare states of emergency to allow truck drivers to work longer shifts to ease resulting shortages: 40

Year in which the Alpharetta, Georgia-based Colonial Pipeline Co. was founded by nine oil companies: 1962

Number of entities that now own the private company, including Koch Capital Investments and Shell Pipeline: 5

In 1996, after a break in another section of the Colonial Pipeline that the company knew to be weak, gallons of toxic diesel fuel that spilled into South Carolina's Reedy River: nearly 1 million

Miles of the Reedy River that spill contaminated, killing vegetation, fish and other wildlife: 23

Amount the company paid in settlements to South Carolina and landowners after pleading guilty to criminal negligence: $13 million

Additional amount Colonial paid in Clean Water Act fines for the Reedy River spill: $41 million

Amount of fuel oil spilled into Virginia's Sugarland Run Creek and the Potomac River when another section of the Colonial Pipeline ruptured in 1993: over 400,000

Gallons of fuel oil that spilled into South Carolina's Little Durbin Creek and the Enoree River when a section of the Colonial Pipeline ruptured in 1991: 550,200

Gallons of fuel oil spilled when a section of the Colonial Pipeline broke in Chattanooga, Tennessee, in 1979: 300,000

Amount Colonial Pipeline has spent lobbying at the federal level over the past decade: $1.2 million

(Click on figure to go to source.)