Canadian railroad shipments hit a roadblock as thousands of toxic tank cars have to be emptied

The two-week flood that just killed at least 11 people in British Columbia is again affecting export routes in Canada. The big problem is rail traffic, as railway cars with corn and fertilizers to the U.S. and freight to Portland, Ore., have been delayed, forcing rail companies to discharge the goods at landfills. The result? Rail companies are once again pulling loaded rail cars and repairing them before bringing on new loaders. This delay caused tank cars to be re-used, with a long-term issue created as part of this process. As a result, more than five tank cars per day across the country are being dumped at landfills. While this may not seem like much to most people, this is a serious problem as it means toxic chemicals will be dumped in landfills, contaminating soil. The Center for Science in the Public Interest says oil production is responsible for 44.6 percent of Canada’s air emissions, including 18,031.4 tons of benzene. When this waste is dumped, it mixes with soil, contaminating that soil. Trucking the same goods takes longer, which means shipments are canceled altogether. The Canadian province of British Columbia has warned of the potential dangers to people and the environment, blaming millions of dollars in damages and market value lost due to the transportation disruption.

Click here to read the full story at The Huffington Post.


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