Freight rail strike could jeopardize fuel supplies nationwide, business groups say

  • In Politics
  • 2022-11-28 21:12:07Z
  • By Politico

Two associations representing gas station owners warned Monday that a freight rail shutdown, which could happen as soon as Dec. 9, could jeopardize their ability to keep fuel in stock across the country.

"If a work stoppage were to occur, it would immediately disrupt fuel marketers' ability to ensure a reliable and stable supply of fuel for U.S. consumers and for the nation's commercial fleets," said Tiffany Wlazlowski Neuman, a spokesperson for NATSO, which represents travel plaza and truckstop owners.

At a press briefing Monday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre would not confirm or deny reporting from the Washington Post that President Joe Biden will ask Congress to intervene to prevent rail workers from striking or railroads from locking out workers.

She said she had nothing to report on that score but that the administration has been in "regular communication with Congress" and that "when the president has made a decision on this, if he makes a decision on this, you'll hear from him."

She noted that Biden has been "directly involved in the process and has been engaged with his team" and Congress "in case resolving the issue falls to them, as it has 18 times in the last 60 years."

Coming disruptions: NATSO, together with SIGMA, a trade group for fuel marketers, warned that the availability of ethanol and diesel exhaust fluid could be disrupted if a strike or lockout shut down the nation's railroads.

All diesel machines that are built with more than 74 horsepower are required to have a system to reduce pollution, and that system uses diesel exhaust fluid, which is made from water and urea. Sixty to 70 percent of ethanol transport happens on rail. It cannot be transported in oil pipelines because of its alcohol content.

"The U.S. economy in many ways revolves around transportation fuel, and if the necessary components to that fuel cannot get to where they are needed, the market impact will be drastic," Neuman said in a statement. "A prolonged railroad shutdown will constrain the nation's fuel supply by disrupting the availability of ethanol, which is often an essential component of gasoline, and diesel exhaust fluid, which most heavy-duty trucks need to run."

What's next: The railroads and the four unions that have rejected the latest contract offers have until Dec. 9 to negotiate a new deal. If an agreement can't be reached in the next few days, railroads are likely to pre-emptively stop shipping sensitive materials like ethanol and urea so that they are not stranded once a shutdown happens.

Alex Daugherty contributed to this report.


More Related News

Jeanine Pirro Gets Testy Over Trump Docs on
Jeanine Pirro Gets Testy Over Trump Docs on 'The Five'

Fox NewsA discussion about classified documents being found at Mar-a-Lago and at President Joe Biden's Delaware home turned snippy on Thursday, with The Five...

A look at California
A look at California's back-to-back mass shootings
  • World
  • 2023-01-27 00:15:40Z

In the course of 48 hours, two gunmen went on shooting rampages at both ends of California that left 18 dead and 10 wounded. The unrelated massacres at a...

Sen. Kennedy stumps Biden judicial nominee with basic questions about Constitution
Sen. Kennedy stumps Biden judicial nominee with basic questions about Constitution

A judicial nominee of President Joe Biden was stumped by Sen. John Kennedy's basic questions about the Constitution during her Senate confirmation hearing.

Biden says GOP
Biden says GOP 'threatening to destroy' economy; Chao chides former boss Trump: live updates

The RNC continue with closed-door sessions - and a lot of lobbying to elect RNC chair. Also, footage of Paul Pelosi's attack could be released today.

Amid gains, railroaders seeking quality-of-life improvements
Amid gains, railroaders seeking quality-of-life improvements
  • US
  • 2023-01-26 20:54:59Z

The contract imposed on railroad workers last fall didn't resolve their quality-of-life issues, but already this year there are indications the major freight...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply


Top News: Politics