EPA head says agency looking for Oklahoma pollution source

Bird Creek

PAWHUSKA, Okla. –  Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt says the agency is looking for the source of pollution at a contaminated creek in Osage County.

Pruitt, Oklahoma’s former attorney general, visited the contaminated Bird Creek Friday to discuss the agency’s efforts to determine the source of the pollution and correct it.

The Tulsa World reports that saltwater contamination was first reported in August 2016 when an oily sheen appeared on North Bird Creek along with dead fish and turtles a few miles from the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve.

The water is a byproduct of extracting oil. The oil and water are separated and the water is injected back into rock formations.

Testing by EPA indicates warm saltwater is percolating up into the creek but the precise source of the saltwater remains unknown.