Event Title

Minnesota and the Logistics of Bakken Crude Oil

Location

CSU Ballroom

Start Date

20-4-2015 2:00 PM

End Date

20-4-2015 3:30 PM

Student's Major

Chemistry and Geology

Student's College

Science, Engineering and Technology

Mentor's Name

Cindy Miller

Mentor's Email Address

cynthia.miller@mnsu.edu

Mentor's Department

Geography

Mentor's College

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Description

The extraction of Bakken crude oil in the Williston Basin of North Dakota is changing how petroleum is shipped. Before 2008, pipelines primarily moved North American oil from source regions to refineries along the Gulf Coast. Existing pipelines cannot accommodate huge volumes of oil from this previously low producing region. Lack of infrastructure and demand for “light tight oil” (LTO) led to the use of railroads as a way of moving the product to refineries across the nation. Transporting oil by rail over long distances was uncommon in past decades because of the high costs. This research examines how a new rail logistics system evolved over the past five years by mapping previously undisclosed routes used by major railroads that carry Bakken LTO and shows how Minnesota fits into the overall scheme of Bakken oil transportation. Safety issues resulting from the volatile nature of the product prompted the U.S. Department of Transportation to mandate the release of routing data to states affected, however some states refused to make it public. States such as Minnesota, California, Washington, and New York emerged as leaders addressing safety issues regarding the movement of Bakken LTO. By supplementing this information with locational data regarding spills and talking to experts—the results reveal a new pattern of crude oil movement to coastal areas of the nation with approximately 70% of Bakken oil going through Minnesota. Findings show Bakken LTO is increasingly routed to the Pacific Northwest and northeastern cities.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Apr 20th, 2:00 PM Apr 20th, 3:30 PM

Minnesota and the Logistics of Bakken Crude Oil

CSU Ballroom

The extraction of Bakken crude oil in the Williston Basin of North Dakota is changing how petroleum is shipped. Before 2008, pipelines primarily moved North American oil from source regions to refineries along the Gulf Coast. Existing pipelines cannot accommodate huge volumes of oil from this previously low producing region. Lack of infrastructure and demand for “light tight oil” (LTO) led to the use of railroads as a way of moving the product to refineries across the nation. Transporting oil by rail over long distances was uncommon in past decades because of the high costs. This research examines how a new rail logistics system evolved over the past five years by mapping previously undisclosed routes used by major railroads that carry Bakken LTO and shows how Minnesota fits into the overall scheme of Bakken oil transportation. Safety issues resulting from the volatile nature of the product prompted the U.S. Department of Transportation to mandate the release of routing data to states affected, however some states refused to make it public. States such as Minnesota, California, Washington, and New York emerged as leaders addressing safety issues regarding the movement of Bakken LTO. By supplementing this information with locational data regarding spills and talking to experts—the results reveal a new pattern of crude oil movement to coastal areas of the nation with approximately 70% of Bakken oil going through Minnesota. Findings show Bakken LTO is increasingly routed to the Pacific Northwest and northeastern cities.

Recommended Citation

Rau, Austin. "Minnesota and the Logistics of Bakken Crude Oil." Undergraduate Research Symposium, Mankato, MN, April 20, 2015.
http://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/urs/2015/poster_session_B/25