Study from oil industry group say Bakken, other light crudes similar
BISMARCK -- A final report on Bakken crude released Monday by the North Dakota Petroleum Council will be presented to the North Dakota Industrial Commission on Wednesday.
The study was done in response to two train derailments last year in which railcars carrying Bakken crude ended in violent explosions. One derailment and explosion in Quebec killed 47 people. Another explosion occurred just outside Casselton, N.D.
The final report confirms preliminary results of the Bakken Crude Characteristics Study, which found that Bakken crude is similar to other North American light, sweet crudes and does not pose a greater risk to transport by rail than other crudes and transportation fuels, the NDPC said in a statement.
“This study provides the most thorough and comprehensive analysis of crude oil quality from a tight oil production basin to date,” John Auers, executive vice president of Turner, Mason & Co., the engineering firm commissioned to conduct the study, said in a news release.
In addition to confirming the initial findings presented in May, the final report also detailed best practices for field operations to ensure consistent operation of treating equipment, Bakken crude oil quality and testing procedures and shipping classification.
In addition to recommended best practices and analysis of the final results from sampling and testing, the final report also compares analysis from other studies on Bakken crude, including a study commissioned by the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers and the federal Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.
“The test results from this study are consistent with scientific data reported by the AFPM and PHMSA,” Petroleum Council vice president Kari Cutting said. “All of this data does not support the speculation that Bakken crude is more volatile or flammable than other light, sweet crudes.”
The full report is available at www.ndoil.org/resources/BKN.
The Petroleum Council commissioned Turner, Mason & Co. and SGS Laboratories, at a cost of about $400,000, to conduct the study.