Kudos to Russell Gold of the Wall Street Journal for his important article reporting on a comparative analysis done of the volatility of various kinds of crude from around the world. Of 86 types of crude tested, the analysis concludes that North Dakota crude is the most volatile! Watch out!
This WSJ analysis is consistent with and explains the horrendous explosions that have resulted, when trains transporting North Dakota crude have derailed. One such explosion killed 47 people in Canada.
Despite the especially explosive, dangerous characteristics of North Dakota crude, the New York Times reports North Dakota crude is still being transported in non-puncture resistant tankers.
According to the NYT, neither the railroads nor crude producers are willing to make sure that North Dakota crude is transported in only puncture-resistant tankers. Meanwhile, possible federal regulatory changes, that would mandate North Dakota crude be transportant only in modern, puncture-resistant tankers, are moving at a snail's pace.
Industry resistance and slow regulatory response means that virtually every train transporting North Dakota crude remains today a disaster waiting to happen. For those of living in Pennsylvania that is particularly disturbing, because about 20% of North Dakota's crude rolls through our communities. Yet, Governor Corbett continues to do nothing to protect the safety of Pennsylvanians, even as the response of the industries involved and federal regulators is completely inadequate.
The WSJ analysis of the volatility of North Dakota crude is now powerful evidence and facts that the risks posed by transporting North Dakota crude in non-puncture-resistant containers are unacceptably high!