Peterr commented on the blog post Words, Deeds, Droughts, and Decisions on Climate Change
If the railroads were that attractive an alternative, the oil company involved would not be spending so damn much to get a pipeline built.
They spent a ton of money on the planning for the original pipeline route, both in DC and in the various states through which it would run. When Nebraska’s governor expressed his opposition, they spent another ton of money coming up with a route that would satisfy him. They spent a couple of additional tons of money on lobbying in DC and the various states to line up the necessary political support, and then spent another couple of tons on top of that when the protests really got ramped up.
And I promise you that they are still spending tons of money in advance of this Presidents Day protest.
Even with all the money they are spending and all the hassles involved, they still think this pipeline is their most cost-effective way to get their oil to market.
If railroads were such an easy alternative, they would have gone there ages ago. Ditto for a pipeline plan that stayed in Canada and brought the tar sands oil to the west coast. The oil company looked at both of those options, and found them less attractive than fighting this political battle AND building the long pipeline from Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico.