Bulk Transport

Bulk Transport

All the news pertaining to rail volume, jobs, traffic and more.

Commentary

Intermodal service is sliding back downhill, and things could get worse if federal regulators slow down crude oil trains, a move that would take velocity out of the entire network.

News & Analysis

Greg Knowler, senior editor, JOC
08 Apr 2019
Greg Knowler, senior editor, JO
21 Nov 2016
There are potential favorable impacts of the political earthquake in the form of the incoming Trump administration.
Wheat production is expected to rise 13 percent year-over-year in 2016 as other crops are also expected to come in above 2015 levels.
29 Aug 2016
U.S. exporters are bracing for what could be another historic harvest this year.
Union Pacific train at grain silos
26 Jan 2015
Grain handlers in the northern Midwest say they are getting faster rail service, speeding soybean exports to the Pacific Northwest.
03 Oct 2014
A coalition of soybean exporters urged the U.S. freight transportation industry Friday to invest in infrastructure, equipment and process improvements to maintain the role of the American farmer as the world’s preeminent supplier of soybeans.
Grain elevator
27 Aug 2014
U.S. grain shippers are welcoming the International Longshore and Warehouse Union’s collective bargaining agreement with Pacific Northwest grain handlers, but they are still concerned about poor rail service that is hampering their ability to get exports to Asia.
BNSF locomotive
19 Aug 2014
BNSF Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway say they are steadily reducing a backlog of grain shipments, but agricultural shippers warn the true test of whether they can handle the upcoming harvest will come quickly, in a week or two.
Wheat wrapped in money
12 Aug 2014
WASHINGTON — Congressional pressure is mounting on BNSF Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway to get rid of a backlog of U.S. grain shipments before the harvest arrives this fall.
Weekly wrap-up for August 9, 2014
08 Aug 2014
Troubles in the Pacific Northwest dominated the news this week.
Wheat
08 Aug 2014
Many U.S. Midwest grain exporters have little reason to be optimistic that they’ll get their products to market on-time or for a price that will make shipping to Asia economically feasible.
10 Apr 2014
Bulk rail shippers ranging from agriculture to coal producers told the U.S. Surface Transportation Board today that poor rail service must be solved before their business suffers even more.
24 Mar 2014
Canadian National Railway said it’s meeting the government requirement to transport more grain but warned that grain elevators on the west coast are nearing capacity and ice coverage prevents shipping via the Great Lakes.
21 Feb 2014
WASHINGTON — Following a series of accidents involving trains hauling crude oil, the major U.S. railroads and federal regulators have agreed to series of safety practices, including slower speeds through urban areas and increased inspections.
17 Jan 2014
The U.S. energy boom has helped the nation reduce its trade deficit and could pave the way for even more natural gas exports. But the energy bonanza comes at a cost. Rocketing natural gas and oil production appears to be hampering the shipment of one of the U.S.’s top export: agriculture products.
Grain silos in Idaho.
23 Oct 2013
U.S. farmers expect to harvest bumper corn and wheat crops this year, which should more than reverse the shortfall caused by last year’s drought.
01 Oct 2013
Indian Railways has announced a 15 percent hike in its freight charges for all bulk commodities, effective Oct. 1, as part of a “busy season tariff adjustment.”
Canadian rail freight traffic.
25 Sep 2013
The Canadian railway industry carried 27.0 million metric tons of freight in July, a 1.8 percent year-over-year decline, according to Statistics Canada.
08 Aug 2013
U.S. Development Group and Gibson Energy have partnered to expand USDG’s crude-by-rail development to Canada, in turn boosting transportation optionality for Gibson’s Hardisty Terminals customers in Alberta.
02 Aug 2013
Freight carried by Canadian railways rose 12.9 percent year-over-year to 29.3 million metric tons in May, as the industry saw a “strong” increase in domestic freight traffic compared with May 2012 levels.
Oil refinery in the United States
17 Jul 2013
The amount of crude oil delivered by rail and truck to U.S. refineries is soaring, climbing 62.6 percent in 2012 thanks to rising shale oil production output.
11 Jul 2013
K+S Potash Canada and Canadian Pacific have signed a long-term, volume-based contract for the transportation of potash products from K+S’s Legacy site.
11 Jul 2013
As U.S. crude oil production outpaces pipeline capacity, the U.S. is depending more on railroads to move crude oil to refineries and storage centers...
10 Jul 2013
Investigators trying to determine what caused the crude oil train derailment that killed at least 15 people in Lac-Mégantic, Quebec, are focusing on the train's engineer, according to news reports.
10 Jul 2013
The chairman of the Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railway expects tougher safety regulations in the wake of the Lac-Mégantic rail disaster, and he told CBC/Radio-Canada the MMA is already planning to change its operations and policies.
08 Jul 2013
A train disaster in Quebec on July 6 is prompting debate about the safety of shipping crude oil by rail or pipelines....
05 Jul 2013
Di-Corp, a distributor of specialty chemicals, parts and accessories serving mining and drilling industries in Canada and the United States, is building a frac sand transloading terminal north of Grande Prairie, Alberta.
28 Jun 2013
Norfolk Southern has opened its new Thoroughbred Bulk Transfer terminal in Columbia, S.C., which will allow customers without rail sidings to transfer a large array of commodities between railcars and trucks.
Map of Canada, with flag colors superimposed.
26 Jun 2013
The Canadian railway industry’s freight commodity loadings in April rose 11 percent compared with the same month in 2012 to 30.2 million metric tons, according to Statistics Canada.
30 May 2013
Canada’s House of Commons is set to vote this afternoon on a bill requiring service contracts between railroads and their customers.
23 May 2013
Norfolk Southern has unveiled its new $5.9 million Thoroughbred Bulk Transfer terminal in Knoxville, Tenn., which will allow customers to transfer a large array of commodities between railcars and trucks.
21 May 2013
Genesis Energy will expand its rail terminal in Natchez, Miss., and construct a new unit train loading facility in Wyoming in the Powder River Basin of the Niobrara shale play.
28 Mar 2013
NYK Line will establish NYK Bulk and Projects Carriers on Oct. 1, 2013, following the merger of its subsidiaries, NYK-Hinode Line and NYK Global Bulk.
Image of future New Town transloading facility, scheduled for completion in December.
22 Mar 2013
Construction has begun on the Pioneer Project, which will expand the New Town transloading facility in North Dakota, increasing rail capacity in the Williston Basin...
Carload and intermodal volumes on U.S. railroads: week-to-week percentage changes. Source: Association of American Railroads.
15 Feb 2013
For the week ending Feb. 9, U.S. intermodal volume rose 7.7 percent year-over-year to 244,679 trailers and containers, according to the Association of American Railroads.
BNSF intermodal train
25 Jan 2013
The major U.S. railroads could eventually snatch about 45 million truck loads annually on routes 500 miles or higher, as intermodal infrastructure improves, fuel costs rise and trucking industry capacity tightens, a Cleveland Research senior analyst and partner said Wednesday.