WASHINGTON, Sept. 23 (UPI) — An environmental advocacy group said it wants President Barack Obama to use his authority to ban the type of rail cars tied to recent oil train derailments.
Photo: Daniel J. Graeber
Older rail cars designated DOT-111 carrying crude oil have been involved in a series of disastrous derailments, including the deadly incident in Lac-Megantic, Quebec in 2013.
In mid-September, Earthjustice, ForestEthics and the Sierra Club filed a lawsuit against the Department of Transportation for not responding to a petition filed in July calling for a ban on shipping Bakken crude from North Dakota using DOT-111 cars.
ForestEthics campaigner Matt Krogh said a recent report from the U.S. Governmental Accountability Office emphasized some of the risks associated with shipping oil by rail.
“ForestEthics is asking the president to take the GAO report to heart, ban dangerous DOT-111 tanker cars, slow these trains, and protect the American public from the spills, fires, and carbon pollution that these trains bring,” he said in a Monday statement.
The government in July issued a proposal calling for the phasing out of older DOT-111 rail cars used to ship flammable liquids, “including most Bakken crude oil.” A January report described Bakken crude oil as potentially more flammable than other grades, though industry officials countered the claim.
“The industry has failed to act, claiming vague rules and exemptions from emergency planning for trains,” Krogh said.