It looks like Keystone pipeline protesters are having an unintended impact. Thanks in part to anti-pipeline activism, oil in North America is increasingly being shipped by train. So far this trend has been little noticed by the environmental community, but it's big news in the rail world. From Railway Age:
“Railroads are booming, and [the reason] is oil,” reports the well-known and highly respected stock market news and financial analysis website Seeking Alpha. “Railroad stocks are ready to leap on booming oil transportation.”
The boom started in January, when President Obama denied approval for pipeline operator TransCanada’s proposed $7 billion Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil from Canada’s oil sands to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries. ...
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) says rail deliveries of oil and petroleum rose almost 40% in this year’s first half. BNSF, the biggest railway mover of crude in the U.S., posted an increase of 60% in carloads of crude oil and petroleum products during that period.
Bloomberg Businessweek reports on the trend as well: