THANK YOU to the Bend city council for unanimously approving the resolution opposing oil trains through Bend!
Click here to read the article in the Bend Bulletin about the event.
Click here to read the resolution itself.
Trains carrying explosive crude oil are traveling through our community. Lets protect the safety of our homes, schools, and businesses that sit within the blast and fire zone of the tracks.
What this does not do: It will not stop fossil fuels from traveling through Bend.
What this does: This is largely a symbolic gesture that shows that our leaders and community are concerned about transporting fossil fuels by rail. It will provide the foundation for other actions that leaders, both local, regional, and national, might take to improve the safety and minimize the risks to health, safety, and property.
The number of trains carrying crude oil through Oregon and the Pacific Northwest is increasing. State agencies are not always notified of the increase (OPB). Much of the oil comes from out of state or out of the country, and is headed overseas; Oregon residents are exposed to the risks involved in transporting this fuel while seeing very few of the benefits. Oregon’s laws are currently the weakest on the West Coast, making us the path of least resistance. The Trump administration issued an executive order in April of 2019 which will start allowing liquefied natural gas (LNG) by rail in the continental US, adding to the number of potentially dangerous and explosive trains traveling through towns and cities in Oregon
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Learn more about oil trains and what can happen when they derail, crash and catch fire:
A timeline of oil train crashes and derailments in the U.S. and Canada:
— July 5, 2013: A runaway Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway train that had been left unattended derailed, spilling oil and catching fire inside the town of Lac-Megantic in Quebec. Forty-seven people were killed and 30 buildings burned in the town’s center. About 1.6 million gallons of oil was spilled. The oil was being transported from the Bakken region of North Dakota, the heart of an oil fracking boom, to a refinery in Canada.
— Nov. 8, 2013: An oil train from North Dakota derailed and exploded near Aliceville, Alabama. There were no deaths, but an estimated 749,000 gallons of oil spilled from 26 tanker cars.
— Dec. 30, 2013: A fire engulfed tank cars loaded with oil on a Burlington Northern Santa Fe train after a collision about a mile from Casselton, North Dakota. No one was injured, but more than 2,000 residents were evacuated as emergency responders struggled with the intense fire.
— Jan. 7, 2014: A 122-car Canadian National Railway train derailed in New Brunswick, Canada. Three cars containing propane and one car transporting crude oil from western Canada exploded after the derailment, creating intense fires that burned for days. About 150 residents were evacuated.
— Jan. 20, 2014: Seven CSX train cars, six of them containing oil from the Bakken region, derailed on a bridge over the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. The bridge is near the University of Pennsylvania, a highway and three hospitals. No oil was spilled and no one was injured. The train from Chicago was more than 100 cars long.
— April 30, 2014: Fifteen cars of a crude oil train derailed in Lynchburg, Virginia, near a railside eatery and a pedestrian waterfront, sending flames and black smoke into the air. Nearly 30,000 gallons of oil were spilled into the James River.
— Feb. 14, 2015: A 100-car Canadian National Railway train hauling crude oil and petroleum distillates derailed in a remote part of Ontario, Canada. The blaze it ignited burned for days.
— Feb. 16, 2015: A 109-car CSX oil train derailed and caught fire near Mount Carbon, West Virginia, leaking oil into a Kanawha River tributary and burning a house to its foundation. The blaze burned for most of week.
— March 10, 2015: Twenty-one cars of a 105-car Burlington Northern Santa Fe train hauling oil from the Bakken region of North Dakota derailed about 3 miles outside Galena, Illinois, a town of about 3,000 in the state’s northwest corner.
— March 7, 2015: A 94-car Canadian National Railway crude oil train derailed about 3 miles outside the northern Ontario town of Gogama. The resulting fire destroyed a bridge. The accident was 23 miles from the Feb. 14 derailment.
— May 6, 2015: A 109-car Burlington Northern Santa Fe crude oil train derails near Heimdal, North Dakota. Six cars exploded into flames and an estimated 60,000 gallons of oil spilled.
— July 16, 2015: More than 20 cars from a 108-car Burlington Northern Santa Fe oil train derailed east of Culbertson, Montana, spilling an estimated 35,000 gallons of oil.
__ Nov. 7, 2015: More than a dozen cars loaded with crude oil derail from a Canadian Pacific Railway train prompting the evacuation of dozens of homes near Watertown, Wisconsin.
— June 3, 2016: A Union Pacific train hauling crude oil derails in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge, sparking a large fire.
“Fossil Fuel Risk Bonding – Shifting the clean-up bill from the public to polluters.” (July 8, 2020)
“In Setback to Industry, the Ninth Circuit Sends California Climate Liability Cases Back to State Courts” (May 27, 2020)