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Thread: Keystone Pipeline anyone?

  1. #31
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Henlee View Post
    Truth be told it is pretty safe if it over rail or in a pipeline. Accidents are going to happen either way and they are so infrequent that they still make good news stories. The important thing is that these companies take care of the mess and do everything possible to not harm people when they happen.
    However, the rail accidents seem to be coming more frequently lately ... could that be because of increasing rail traffic for oil due to lack of sufficient pipeline transport? I haven't checked the exact dates, but it seems like there have been 2 in US and 1 in Canada in just about a month?
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  2. #32
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Railroads continue to claim an average of only thirteen spills per year over the last ten years, but 65% of oil shipments by rail were in the last two years. An average of one oil train a month derailed in 2013. The worst accident was the July 6th derailment and explosion of an oil train carrying Bakken crude oil through the center of the town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec, where 47 people were incinerated and 30 buildings were destroyed. But there were also numerous environmental disasters this year from derailments that spilled hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude oil.


    Although some railroads, like BNI, appear to have deep pockets to pay claims from accidents, the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway (MM&A) the operator of the oil train that exploded in Lac-Megantic, has already filed for bankruptcy. The cleanup costs alone for property damage will run over $100 million, but the potential costs for the Lac-Megantic personal injury lawsuits are estimated to run up to $1 billion.

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/2014/...#ixzz2pRmWnDD6

    Railroads have been making fortunes carrying 75% of Bakken oil and charging $17 a barrel to move crude oil to Texas refineries, versus the estimated $10 a barrel to ship by the Keystone XL Pipeline. Most analysts were baffled in 2009 when Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway Corporation made its biggest ever acquisition of the Burlington Northern Railway (BNI). The railroad was making good profits carrying the majority of Bakken oil, but that business was expected to shrink by 2012 when the Keystone XL Pipeline was scheduled to come on line. But since the Buffet purchase, the volume of Bakken oil shipped by train has increased by 2,000%. BNI's profits have grown by 30% a year to a record $2.37 billion in 2013. Goldman Sachs recently estimated the continuing delays in building the XL pipeline could raise from 10 oil trains of up to 100 tankers that left the Bakken everyday in 2013 could vault to 15 a day in 2014.

    America in 1970 had 315 refineries sprinkled across the nation, and the U.S. imported just 72 million gallons of crude oil per day. But by 2006, environmental restrictions had shrunk America's number of refineries to 105 and the nation was importing 587 million gallons per day. In percentage terms of U.S. supply, imports grew from 20% to 65%. Hydraulic fracking in the U.S. has increased domestic production so much that by the end of 2014 imports will have been cut back to just 35% of demand.

    Of course, less imported oil is also partly due to decreased demand in the US due to the economy. If and when the economy improves, then the virtues of having more US oil production will mean more exports and, in serving world demand for both NG and oil should also mean more capital in the US instead of the ME. Such capital also then becomes available for the research to develop the technology for viable renewable energy.

    Interesting note on a notice I got from my electric company. They are offering me the "opportunity" to switch to more renewable energy sources by paying an additional 1.1 cents/kwh. The pamphlet shows that presently most electricity in my area is currently provided by coal (about 41%); followed by nuclear and NG. The energy provided by renewables is led by wind at 1.6%, and the next is .6% by recycled waste! Solar is about .1% and captured methane about .2%



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  3. #33
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    >>when Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway Corporation made its biggest ever acquisition of the Burlington Northern Railway (BNI).

    Tsk, tsk. I don't know what this shows about the American Thinker but Warren Buffet never owned the Burlington Northern Railway. The Burlington Northern had bought the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe in 1996, long before he appeared on the scene. What he bought was the BNSF.

    The reading of the history of the railroads in this country is a little like reading a pedigree on a dog. In my job as Land Manager for the Dept of Mental Health, I had a dispute with the BNSF. They sold a right of way that we had given one of their predecessors in the 1940's for putting in a coal siding into a hospital. The right of way had a reversion clause. I had to dig through the corporate history of about 10 railroads to trace the ownership and reversion.
    Eric

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  4. #34
    Senior Member Golddogs's Avatar
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    Data show increase in train oil hazards

    Reports: More oil spilled from trains in 2013 than previous 4 decades



    By Curtis Tate


    McClatchy Newspapers


    More crude oil was spilled in U.S. rail incidents last year than was spilled in the nearly four decades since the federal government began collecting data on such spills, an analysis of the data shows.

    Including major derailments in Alabama and North Dakota, more than 1.15 million gallons of crude oil was spilled from rail cars in 2013, according to data from the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.

    By comparison, from 1975 to 2012, U.S. railroads spilled a combined 800,000 gallons of crude oil. The spike underscores new concerns about the safety of such shipments as rail has become the preferred mode for oil producers amid a North American energy boom.

    The federal data do not include incidents in Canada where oil spilled from trains. Canadian authorities estimate that more than 1.5 million gallons of crude oil spilled in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, on July 6, when a runaway train derailed and exploded, killing 47 people. The cargo originated in North Dakota.

    Nearly 750,000 gallons of crude oil spilled from a train on Nov. 8 near Aliceville, Ala. The train originated in North Dakota and caught fire after it derailed in a swampy area. No one was injured or killed.

    The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration doesnít yet have spill data from a Dec. 30 derailment near Casselton, N.D. But the National Transportation Safety Board, which is the lead investigator in that incident, estimates that more than 400,000 gallons of crude oil were spilled there. Though no one was injured or killed, the intense fire forced most of Casseltonís 2,400 residents to evacuate in subzero temperatures.

    The Association of American Railroads, an industry group, estimates that railroads shipped 400,000 carloads of crude oil last year. Thatís more than 11.5 billion gallons, with one tank car holding roughly 28,800 gallons.

    Last yearís total spills of 1.15 million gallons means that 99.99 percent of shipments arrived without incident, close to the safety record the industry and its regulators claim about hazardous materials shipments by rail.

    But until just a few years ago, railroads werenít carrying crude oil in 80- to 100-car trains. In eight of the years between 1975 and 2009, railroads reported no spills of crude oil. In five of those years, they reported spills of one gallon or less.

    In 2010, railroads reported spilling about 5,000 gallons of crude oil, according to federal data. They spilled less than 4,000 gallons each year in 2011 and 2012.

    But excluding the Alabama and North Dakota derailments, more than 11,000 gallons of crude oil spilled from trains last year.

    Last week, the principal Washington regulators of crude oil shipments by rail met with railroad and oil industry representatives to discuss making changes to how crude is shipped by rail, from tank car design to operating speed to appropriate routing.

    Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx called the meeting productive and said the group would take a comprehensive approach to improving the safety of crude-oil trains.

    Foxx said the changes would be announced within the next 30 days.
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  5. #35
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    The answer is that we should just stop using oil ... NOW!
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  6. #36
    Senior Member Golddogs's Avatar
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    All-righty then.

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline cleared a major hurdle Friday as the State Department raised no major environmental objections to the controversial pipeline from Canada through the heart of the U.S. Republicans and some oil- and gas-producing states cheered, but the report further rankled environmentalists already at odds with President Barack Obama.
    The department report stops short of recommending approval of the $7 billion pipeline, which has become a major symbol of the political debate over climate change. But the review gives Obama new cover if he chooses to endorse the pipeline in spite of opposition from many Democrats and environmental groups. Foes say the pipeline would carry "dirty oil" that contributes to global warming. They also worry about a spill.
    Republicans and business and labor groups have urged Obama to approve the pipeline to create thousands of jobs and move toward North American energy independence. The pipeline is also strongly supported by Democrats in oil and gas-producing states, including Sens. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Mark Begich of Alaska and Mark Pryor of Arkansas. All face re-election this year and could be politically damaged by rejection of the pipeline. Republican Mitt Romney carried all three states in the 2012 presidential election.
    The 1,179-mile pipeline would travel through the heart of the United States, carrying oil derived from tar sands in western Canada to a hub in Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines to carry more than 800,000 barrels of crude oil a day to refineries in Texas.
    Canadian tar sands are likely to be developed regardless of U.S. action on the pipeline, the report said, and other options to get the oil from Canada to Gulf Coast refineries — including rail, trucks and barges — would be worse for climate change.
    "Approval or denial of any one crude oil transport project ... is unlikely to significantly impact the rate of extraction in the oil sands or the continued demand for heavy crude oil at refineries in the United States," the report states.
    State Department approval is needed because the pipeline crosses a U.S. border. The Environmental Protection Agency and other departments will have 90 days to comment before State makes a recommendation to Obama on whether the project is in the national interest. A final decision by the government is not expected before summer.
    Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said the report "once again confirms that there is no reason for the White House to continue stalling construction of the Keystone XL pipeline." Addressing Obama, McConnell said: "Mr. President, no more stalling, no more excuses. Please pick up that pen you've been talking so much about and make this happen. Americans need these jobs. "
    However, a top official at the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group, said the report gives Obama all the information he needs to reject the pipeline.

    "Piping the dirtiest oil on the planet through the heart of America would endanger our farms, our communities, our fresh water and our climate. That is absolutely not in our national interest," said Susan Casey-Lefkowitz, the NRDC's international program director.
    The new report comes only days after Obama's State of the Union address, in which he reiterated his support for an "all-of-the-above" energy strategy that embraces a wide range of sources, from oil and natural gas to renewables such as wind and solar power. The remarks were a rebuff to some of his environmental allies who argued that Obama's support of expanded oil and gas production doesn't make sense for a president who wants to reduce pollution linked to global warming.
    Obama blocked the Keystone XL pipeline in January 2012, saying he did not have enough time for a fair review before a looming deadline forced on him by congressional Republicans. That delayed the choice for him until after his re-election.
    Obama's initial rejection of the pipeline went over badly in Canada, which relies on the U.S. for 97 percent of its energy exports. The pipeline is critical to Canada, which needs infrastructure in place to export its growing oil sands production. The northern Alberta region has the world's third largest oil reserves, with 170 billion barrels of proven reserves.
    In a bid to smooth over relations with Canada and other pipeline supporters, Obama quickly suggested development of an Oklahoma-to-Texas line to alleviate an oil bottleneck at a Cushing, Okla., storage hub. Oil began moving on that segment of the pipeline last week.
    The 485-mile southern section of the pipeline operated by Calgary-based TransCanada did not require presidential approval because it does not cross a U.S. border.
    The latest environmental review, the fifth released on the project since 2010 — acknowledges that development of tar sands in Alberta would create greenhouse gases, a State Department official said. But the report makes clear that other methods of transporting the oil — including rail, trucks and barges — would release more greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming than the pipeline.
    U.S. and Canadian accident investigators warned last week about the dangers of oil trains that transport crude oil from North Dakota and other states to refineries in the U.S. and Canada. The officials urged new safety rules, cautioning that a major loss of life could result from an accident involving the increasing use of trains to transport large amounts of crude oil.
    Several accidents involving crude oil shipments — including a fiery explosion in North Dakota and an explosion that killed 47 people in Canada last year — have raised alarms.
    Keystone XL would travel through Montana and South Dakota before reaching Nebraska. An existing spur runs through Kansas and Oklahoma to Texas.
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  7. #37
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Reportedly, now follows a 90-day review period before the POTUS would make some decision.

    I would believe that the decision will be based on political factors. If he turns down the pipeline yet again, it won't be very good news for Landrieu's chances of re-election in LA. OTOH, if he can stall a decision until it gets very close to the Nov. 2014 elections, it could give a boost to some of the Dem candidates. If he approves it, it could also boost the economy into a real recovery just in time for Hillary's run for POTUS. I'm sure his decision will be carefully predicated on getting the most bang out of the political buck for the Ds.
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  8. #38
    Senior Member Henlee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gerry Clinchy View Post
    Reportedly, now follows a 90-day review period before the POTUS would make some decision.

    I would believe that the decision will be based on political factors. If he turns down the pipeline yet again, it won't be very good news for Landrieu's chances of re-election in LA. OTOH, if he can stall a decision until it gets very close to the Nov. 2014 elections, it could give a boost to some of the Dem candidates. If he approves it, it could also boost the economy into a real recovery just in time for Hillary's run for POTUS. I'm sure his decision will be carefully predicated on getting the most bang out of the political buck for the Ds.
    He is being pressured by labor groups to do it. The company making has seemingly satisfied a requirement to reroute the pipeline around some wetlands.
    Ole and Sven are quietly sitting in a boat fishing, chewing and drinking beer when suddenly Sven says, 'I think I'm gonna divorce my wife - she ain't spoke to me in over 2 months.' Ole sips his beer and says, 'Better think it over...women like that are hard to find.'

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    I believe they will end up recommending more studies based on another conceived idea.

    Dan

  10. #40
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Storts View Post
    I believe they will end up recommending more studies based on another conceived idea.

    Dan
    That wouldn't surprise me at all. That would allow Obama to authorize the pipeline when it is most politically expedient. Maybe Obama figures they're going to lose Landrieu's and Beglich's Senate seats to Rs anyhow, and he might as well use it as a trump card in the 2016 election?

    If Obama is willing to admit that Africa, China and India "must" burn coal because it is the cheapest fuel, then why would it be so much worse for poorer countries to burn Canada's tar sands oil? Is that fuel dirtier than coal? Not to mention that the Bakken oil is actually a cleaner form, and would also benefit from the pipeline. Maybe we could just watch Warren Buffett, and when he starts divesting himself of his railroad that transports the oil now?

    So, if we have to burden Americans with higher energy prices, at least the economy's income stream from the Bakken oil and pipeline job creation, will give the govt the ability to collect more tax money to redistribute to the poor who will suffer most. Isn't that their ostensible goal, to make things more "equal" and "fair" for the poor people?

    Actually, Obama stated that the US should lead in developing renewable fuel technology so that we could then share it with the other countries who can't afford to do so. The premise being that saving the planet is in our best interest.

    Still a bit puzzled how China can lend us tens of billions of dollars, but can't afford to do some of this renewable energy development with those funds instead. Ironic, that debt gives China financial power over the US, while we spend that money to develop technologies that we will then give back to them, along with the money they invested. Sounds like a great deal for China: they lend us money. We invest their money in this technology. Then we give them back their money, plus whatever interest charged ... and we also give them the technology we develop with their investment. Will that make China our good buddy?

    Yes, Henlee, labor is pressuring to approve the XL, and the environmentalists are pressuring the opposite. I do wonder if the environmentalists are all people who earn $250K or more, who will easily absorb the increase in energy costs that could result from not transporting the Canadian oil. Do they think we (the US) has the power or right to tell Canada that they are bad guys for developing their dirty tar sands oil? After all, that revenue helps Canada support their universal health care system; again, helping poor people. Wouldn't it be unfair for us to deny Canadians their health care? Do those environmentalists compute into the equation the damage that is being done by rail transport?

    Americans have taken forgranted so much about Canada, and having it as a neighbor. For most of US history, Canada has been a friend and international ally. The longest unprotected border in history has been with the US and Canada. Both countries share the values of freedom and hard work. Canada has not sent us tens of millions of illegal immigrants the way Mexico has. We actually promote the benefits of US food stamps in Mexico. I haven't heard that we do that in Canada.

    A Canadian friend tells me we do not appreciate Canada enough. I can agree with that.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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