In the first three months of 2015 four oil train accidents sent emergency responders scrambling, crude oil spilling into drinking water supplies, and fireballs blasting into the sky. The string of accidents in February and March demonstrate the severe threat from Bakken crude and Alberta tar sands moving on mile-long oil trains. These derailments and explosions set a bar we can use to measure the new oil train standards announced today by the US and Canadian governments.
Everybody’s favorite squillonare, Warren (McScrooge) Buffett is depending on those trains running fast. He owns the railroads, and he owns the insurance firms that under-write the cargo. The more trains moving on the tracks, the more profit for both businesses. The cost to clean up an occasional accident is mostly charge out to FEMA, while reminding his oil field clients how much they depend on his companies to move this crap extracted in the most horribly environmentally damaging way. It’s a win all the way around for him.