Quebec oil train explosion – headlines

July 8, 2013

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40 still missing in deadly Canada oil train crash

AP, New Straits Times
LAC-MEGANTIC, Quebec: A Quebec town devastated when a runaway oil tanker train exploded killing at least five people braced for a rising death toll Monday as fire crews tried to reach the hardest hit areas where about 40 people were believed to be missing.

Quebec provincial police Sgt. Benoit Richard said Monday morning there was no searching overnight because the situation remained too dangerous…
(8 July 2013)

Quebec Disaster Spurs Rail-Versus-Pipelines Debate on Oil

Jeremy van Loon & Gerrit De Vynck, Bloomberg
A train disaster that killed five people in Quebec promises to touch off debate over the safety of shipping crude oil by rail or pipelines such as TransCanada Corp. (TRP)’s Keystone XL.

As authorities began investigating the explosion of refinery-bound tank cars hauled by Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway Ltd., Quebec’s Green Party demanded stricter regulations and an energy industry association predicted tough scrutiny ahead for rail carriers.

“People think rail is costless until something like this happens,” said John Stephenson, fund manager with First Asset Investment Management Inc., said from Toronto, where he helps manage C$2.70 billion ($2.65 billion). “This is another data point that shows how much costlier and riskier rail is compared to pipelines and will probably move Canada closer to having an energy strategy.”…
(8 July 2013)

Canadian train explosion rekindles oil pipeline versus train debate

Chris Tackett, Treehugger
On Saturday, a train carrying crude oil derailed and exploded destroying an historic part of Lac-Megantic, Quebec. As firefighters continue to fight the train fire and search for the 40 missing people, this explosion has already rekindled the debate over transporting oil by rail or by pipeline. Here’s a review of the cause of the debate and why there’s no easy solution, but definitely room to improve the status quo… In March 2013 when a train derailed in Minnesota and spilled some 30,000 gallons of crude oil, Reuters reported that it was first major spill since crude-by-rail transport took off three years ago…

At the time, I wrote about how rail accidents could be much larger, but that this was still not a good argument for allowing the Keystone XL pipeline to be built. I’m saddened to see my prediction at the time come true so soon and in such a deadly way…
(8 July 2013)

Oil shipments by rail have increased 28,000 per cent since 2009

Canadian Business
A whopping 28,000 per cent increase in the amount of oil shipped by rail over the past five years is coming under the microscope following the deadly rail blast in Quebec.

Canada’s railways have made a determined push to cash in on the country’s crude-oil bonanza, painting themselves as a cost-effective alternative to politically unpopular pipelines like the proposed Keystone XL.

The Canadian Railway Association recently estimated that as many as 140,000 carloads of crude oil are expected to rattle over the nation’s tracks this year, up from only 500 carloads in 2009.
(8 July 2013)

Deadly Quebec Oil Train Disaster and Athabasca River Spill On Same Day as Tar Sands Healing Walk

Brendan DeMelle, DeSmogBlog

Image RemovedDeadly Quebec Oil Train Disaster and Athabasca River Spill On Same Day as Tar Sands Healing Walk (via Desmogblog)

Today, as hundreds of people joined First Nations leaders to walk 14 kilometers through the tar sands in Fort McMurray on the Tar Sands Healing Walk, news of several new oil disasters spread through the crowd and over social media networks. Details…


Tags: Oil, safety, Transportation