Dangers of Oil Trains

The press release below for a protest of fossil fuels train pollution in Sandpoint, Idaho, this Saturday reminds me of one of my solo demonstrations. Oil trains were moving through Indianapolis at the time (2016).

One of the arguments sometimes made for pipelines was they were a safer way to transport oil than trains. We have to keep all fossil fuel in the ground. Thus we don’t need oil trains or any more pipelines, refineries, cargo ships or any other fossil fuel infrastructure.

We had planned a demonstration, but when no one else showed up, I asked someone walking by to take a photo of me and my sign.


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 30, 2020

Media contact: Helen Yost, Wild Idaho Rising Tide. wild.idaho.rising.tide@gmail.com, 208-301-8039

Saturday Protest of Fossil Fuels Train Pollution

February 1, 10 am rally & carpool at Sandpoint City Beach Park, & 11 am march from Bonners Ferry Visitors Center (Sandpoint, Idaho)

Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT), #No2ndBridge, and regional climate activists are hosting a Fossil Fuels Train Pollution Protest in Bonner and Boundary counties on Saturday, February 1. Participants are gathering at 10 am around the City Beach Park pavilion in Sandpoint, Idaho, for a brief, information sharing rally. Carpoolers are next traveling to the Gateway Visitors Center in Bonners Ferry, Idaho, to march at 11 am and return to Sandpoint by 1 pm.

This community event commemorates the one-month anniversary of the January 1, rockslide derailment and January 26 removal and current disassembly of a Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway, mixed freight train locomotive that submerged and leaked at least 2,100 gallons of diesel fuel and engine oil into the Kootenai River near Moyie Springs, north Idaho.

Resistance to ongoing, coal, oil, and hazardous materials train pollution and derailment risks and impacts to public and environmental health and safety is increasing across the Idaho Panhandle. Rural, rail corridor residents continue to oppose bridge, track, and operations expansions that compound these threats, such as BNSF’s inherently perilous, present and proposed, fossil fuels pipelines-on-rails across north Idaho, along the Kootenai River, and almost one mile over Lake Pend Oreille.

After dozens of derailments along waterways and deadly and injurious railroad collisions in north Idaho and western Montana during the last decade, frontline activists are demanding that multiple government agencies provide to the public and enforce several measures, to prevent and remediate the ecosystem and economic devastation imposed on rural communities by the Kootenai River wreck and similar disasters. Through comment letters, they are requesting derailment oil spill information, independent water quality and environmental monitoring, protection of native and endangered fish and wildlife, a Federal Railroad Administration incident investigation and penalties, and railroad operation revisions and locomotive recovery plans.

Protest organizers ask that participants dress for winter warmth and dryness, bring friends, family, and creative, relevant signs and banners, assist with event transportation, and sign the Petition to Deny and Revoke Permits for the BNSF Sandpoint Junction Connector Project [1]. Contact WIRT for further event and emerging issue information, also described through the linked event flyer and announcements [2] and compiled photos and updates [3] on WIRT facebook and website pages.

Sandpoint, ID: Protest of Fossil Fuels Train Pollution, RISING TIDE NORTH AMERICA, JANUARY 30, 2020

[1] Petition to Deny and Revoke Permits for the BNSF Sandpoint Junction Connector Project https://sign.moveon.org/petitions/petition-to-deny-revoke

[2] Fossil Fuels Train Pollution Protest
https://www.facebook.com/events/538778857035285
https://wildidahorisingtide.org/2020/01/27/fossil-fuels-train-pollution-protest

[3] BNSF Kootenai River Wreck and Spill 1-1-20
https://www.facebook.com/pg/wildidaho.risingtide/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1610550912427743

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2 Responses to Dangers of Oil Trains

  1. Kathleen Hall says:

    Nice pictures, Jeff.  Do you still feel the same about the relative safely of oil trains and pipelines?     It’s hard, being the only one protesting.  Good for you! Kathy

    • jakisling says:

      Thanks Kathy. I’ going to have to edit this post. I didn’t mean I thought one was better than the other. All fossil fuel has to be left in the ground. Thus we don’t need any more oil trains, pipelines, refineries, cargo ships, gas stations or any other fossil fuel infrastructure.

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