Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Subcommittee Chairman Jeff Denham (R-CA) this week returned from leading a bipartisan tour of the Bakken, North Dakota region which included Congressman Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (D-IL), Congressman Tom Rice (R-SC), Congressman Dan Lipinski (D-IL), and Congressman Mark Sanford (R-1-SC).
“This tour gave us a firsthand look at the many elements of crude oil transportation,” said Chairman Denham. “The committee will be focused in the coming months on Pipelines and Hazardous Materials reauthorization, and the experience our bipartisan delegation will bring to that effort from this trip will enable us to better understand the process – the exploration of oil, the construction of the pipelines and the shipment of crude by rail.”
“As a senior member of the Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials Subcommittee, I was pleased to be part of this bipartisan delegation with Chairman Denham to learn more about fracking, Bakken oil, and the transportation of this oil by rail and pipeline,” said Rep. Lipinski. “What I’ve learned here will help guide my work in Washington, especially as we work on reauthorizing the pipeline and hazardous materials safety program. The whole process from extracting the oil to transporting it to refineries must be made as safe as possible. Some of this oil comes through my district and I will continue to make it a top priority to protect these communities from potential harm from accidents.”
Added Rep. Bustos: “The train derailment and explosion near Galena, Illinois earlier this year and others across the nation have made clear the need to improve the safety of our rail and pipeline systems. That’s why I was pleased to take part in this bipartisan Congressional Delegation field hearing in the Bakken region of North Dakota and to ask questions and seek answers firsthand from experts on the ground. I will continue to advocate for robust safety standards for the transportation of volatile materials, like crude oil, and to ensure first responders and workers have the tools they need to protect themselves in the event of a future derailment.”
“I appreciate my colleagues taking time from their recess to visit North Dakota and see the entire oil production and transportation process firsthand,” said Rep. Cramer. “I trust the knowledge they gained will help them make informed decisions this fall as Congress debates crude oil transportation legislation.”
Social media, including photographs, from the trip can be found searching for the hashtag #BakkenTour.