Submission Number: UBR-DEIS-00292 -- Oral Comment at Public Meeting 

Received: 11/18/2020 12:00:00 PM
Commenter: Sarah Stock

Agency: STB
Initiative: Uinta Basin Railway EIS
Attachments: No Attachments
Submission Text
Hello, can you hear me?


Okay.· Thank you.· My name is Sarah Stock, and I also plan on submitting some written comments. · · · · · · And I wasn't exactly prepared to speak today but I would like to highlight one -- one issue in particular, and I want to thank everyone else who has commented.· I think the landowner perspective, Darrell, is really important, and also Katie for bringing up climate change and the CIB. · · · · · ·

But my concern here today is that the purpose and the need of the project is not fully transparent and straightforward.· And by this, I mean that the Seven County Infrastructure Coalition has, over and over again, talked about the purpose of this railway being to unlock the oil that is trapped in the Uinta Basin due to limitations on transportation capacity.· · · · · ·

What I mean by this, I guess, is that the waxy crude in the basin sets up after a few hours in the tanker truck, and right now, those tanker trucks are going to Salt Lake City and they can't go much farther than that.· And Salt Lake City is taking as much Uinta Basin crude as they can handle right now, so there's effectively a limitation on how much oil they can sell. · · · · · ·

And so my concern here is that the Draft Environmental Impact Statement does not fully consider the increase in production of fossil fuels that will be a direct result of the railway being in operation.· And I'm surprised by this because the Seven County Infrastructure Coalition has been so straightforward about talking about that. · · · · · ·

They -- the railway specifically could increase oil production by up to four times, and this is how they're promoting it and selling it and trying to get financing, and I believe that this effect needs to be studied because it is a direct effect of the railway, and the increase in production wouldn't happen without the railway. · · · · · ·

So this effect needs to be studied and considered, specifically the impacts on increased oil production as they relate to climate change and air quality.· And we know that the climate change has ricochetting consequences, especially in the semi arid desert on water and water availability and vegetation and wildlife. · · · · · · So yes, thank you for your time.· That's all.