Because of the lack of pipeline alternatives to move oil to refineries, when the North Dakota Oil Patch began to explode a few years ago, energy companies turned to moving much of their crude by railway. One of the largest railroad transportation companies in the U.S., BNSF Railway has stepped to the plate as the Oil Patch has played a key role in the country’s push toward energy independence.
“Historically, oil and gas producers have used pipelines to transport crude from production to refineries,” said BNSF Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer John Lanigan. “Because this shale development growth came about so quickly, there has been a shortage of pipeline capacity to coastal refineries. BNSF has responded quickly to enable producers to move crude to the most attractive markets.”