alaskan pipeline

Cultural Dictionary

Alaskan pipeline definition

An oil pipeline that runs eight hundred miles from oil reserves in Prudhoe Bay, on the northern coast of Alaska, to the port of Valdez, on Alaska's southern coast, from which the oil can be shipped to markets. Also called the Trans-Alaska pipeline.

Note: After oil was discovered in Prudhoe Bay in 1968, construction of the pipeline was delayed for several years, as conservationists warned against the effects of the pipeline on the ecosystems through which it would run.
Note: In 1989 an environmental disaster occurred when an oil tanker, the Exxon Valdez, ran aground and leaked millions of gallons of oil into Prince William Sound, causing the largest oil spill in U.S. history.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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