Tuesday, August 28, 2012

BNSF slims down expected export coal surge

Written by  Luther S. Miller, Senior Consulting Editor

In travels through the Pacific Northwest last week, BNSF Chairman and CEO Matthew Rose sought to ease concerns of cities and other interests in Washington and Oregon that an expected increase in export coal ports and the number of trains serving them will prove to be unduly disruptive.

He told the Vancouver, Wash., Columbian that these reports will prove to have been exaggerated.

Rose said "widespread speculation" that export coal traffic will increase to 60 to100 trains a day are "nowhere in the realm of seriousness." A reasonable expectation, he said, would be eight to 12 coal trains a day, certainly no more than 16.

As for the six new coal terminals originally proposed, he said the market will support the development of only two or three.

BNSF posted the Columbian article, dated Aug. 23, on its website.