November 30, 2011 / 11:06 PM / in 6 years

UPDATE 1-Suncor says contains leak near S. Platte River

* Leak from firm’s refinery hits South Platte River

* Firm says leak has been contained, source not identified

* May heighten opposition to Keystone pipeline in area

By David Sheppard and Joshua Schneyer

NEW YORK, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Suncor Energy said on Wednesday it has contained a leak near its Commerce City refinery in Colorado that was running into Sand Creek by the South Platte River.

The Canadian energy firm said it had not yet identified the source of the leak, and it did not identify the substance leaking, but said it believed it came from their 93,000 barrel-per-day plant.

“Our team installed booms in the creek to contain the product. That was done yesterday,” said Sneh Seetal, a Suncor spokeswoman in Calgary.

“Our focus is on cleanup at this point. We do not see more product leaking.”

The company did not say how big they believed the leak to be.

The South Platte River is a source of drinking water for the Denver metropolitan area.

The Denver Post earlier reported that federal environmental officials have been managing the spill of the as-yet-unidentified liquid since Monday.

The newspaper said the leak was first reported by a local fisherman on Sunday, though Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment officials have known about hazardous leaks in the area for at least a month, citing documents.

Workers at the Metro Wastewater plant next to the refinery have been provided with respirators due to the stench from the fluid in recent days, the paper said.

Suncor said refinery operations have not been affected by the leak.

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