This database is a collection of Louisiana refinery accidents from 2005 – 2015. These numbers are taken from the refineries’ own reports to the state; since they are self-reported, the true amount of pollution and accidents is likely far worse.
The state database – the Electronic Data Management System – only allows you to see one accident at a time. There is no way to have a comprehensive understanding of refinery accidents in the state system, to understand what a refinery has done over a month or a year or ten years. By obscuring the information, our Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality helps the polluting oil industry obscure the facts about its terrible accident rate.
We created this database to make the information easily available and to give people a way to understand refinery accident trends over time. After doing this work for 10 years, we were tired of simply counting accidents and shifted more of our resources to different strategies to stop them. This database remains important; it is the only comprehensive collection of this data allowing you to see trends over time.
Please visit our reports section for the Common Ground reports that we released in conjunction with the United Steelworkers (the refinery workers union). These reports have information about accidents by year, including analyses of why the accidents happen and how to reduce them.