ND oil experts say Railway Safety Act of 2023 will likely increase US energy prices

Published: Sep. 22, 2023 at 11:47 AM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - If passed as it’s currently written, the Bipartisan Railway Safety Act of 2023 will increase accountability for rail companies while also enhancing safety requirements for trains that transport hazardous materials.

More safety and accountability on railways: it sounds great in theory. However, North Dakota oil experts say the passage could spell trouble for the industry in the state and across the nation.

Ron Ness, North Dakota Petroleum Council president, says the Bakken produces about 1 million barrels of oil a day that travels in and out of our state. While most of the oil is now transported through the Dakota Access Pipeline, he says North Dakota relies on rail to transport pieces of DAPL and other pipelines to the state.

“Energy movements across this country are critical. Not every place has oil and gas like we do, and the availability to move it and store it in pipelines. So, that action is just another step to put a nail in fossil fuels. And of course, it’s just going to increase American energy prices,” said Ness.

Ness says the Act is just one more unnecessary regulation the Biden Administration is trying to impose on the energy sector. He says the next step forward would be for the Biden Administration to approve the use of DAPL as it’s been operating safely and effectively for the past seven years.