The Federal Surface Transportation Board has ordered the Canadian Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroads to make rail cars available for timely delivery of fertilizer for spring planting in the Northern Plains. South Dakota State Ag Secretary Lucas Lentsch says that was in response to a recent hearing in the nation’s capital where the STB took testimony on rail problems.
Lentsch says without timely fertilizer delivery, the economic impacts to South Dakota alone would be in the hundreds of millions of dollars. He says the rail strain has been heightened by the fact in 2009 there were 200,000 barrels of oil a day from Western North Dakota fields and by 2014, that was up to 1.1 million barrels a day.
Lentsch says a long term solution to the rail problem still needs to be worked out.