Quincy Oil Terminal Endangering Community

CLF to sue Sprague Energy for neglecting waterfront facility

The area surrounding Sprague Oil's terminal in Quincy, MA.

The area surrounding Sprague Energy's terminal in Quincy, MA. Photo: Jerry Monkman

Sprague Energy’s terminal in Quincy, Massachusetts is at risk of spilling millions of gallons of oil into the Town River, the Weymouth Fore River, and nearby neighborhoods. The company has failed to protect against severe weather risks and has unlawfully allowed the facility’s protections to erode, leaving the site vulnerable to flooding and unable to contain any potential spills. As a result, Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has notified the company of its intent to sue.

“Sprague’s Quincy terminal is an accident waiting to happen,” said CLF President Bradley Campbell. “The climate crisis is worsening storms and flooding in and around Boston Harbor, and Sprague has sat on their hands while nearby communities are at risk of being inundated with a toxic oil spill. This facility is woefully unprepared for extreme weather, and it’s time the owners are held accountable in court.”

Sprague’s terminal sits in the middle of the densely populated Quincy Point neighborhood on the banks of the Town River. Protective berms designed to contain any spills inside the facility have become dangerously eroded. Storm surge from a hurricane or a spill at the facility could quickly spread oil into the river or onto the streets of both the Quincy Point and Germantown neighborhoods.

The company’s environmental permits require Sprague to ensure that the terminal is designed, operated, and maintained with adequate storm and flooding protection, but it has failed to do so. CLF’s letter notifying the company of the pending lawsuit can be found here.

CLF experts are available for further comment.