West Coast Crude Transport Tracking Project

Map of rail routes
The map above is of current rail routes, interstate pipelines and barges transporting crude across the West Coast. (click image to view larger version pdf, 2MB)

Click each graph to view larger version:

Graph 1
Precent total annual volume by transportation mode (2021)
Graph 2
Annual volume by transportation mode and jurisdiction (2021)
Graph 3
Annual volume by transportation mode and jurisdiction (2021)

Project Overview
The Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force initiated the crude movement project in 2013 in response to the emerging increase in crude movement by rail across several Task Force jurisdictions. This increase in rail transport represented a new risk for the region, with large volumes of oil moving through the inland areas where spill preparedness and response planning was less developed than for the marine waters. The work group for this project consists of the Task Force Coordinating Committee members across from each of the six jurisdictions: Alaska, California, British Columbia, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington.

On-going data collection takes place annually. Our data report contains annual volumes transported by rail, pipeline, vessel, and barge as well as known crude export volumes. This data set includes crude that is transported across state lines, so volumes may be counted more than once (by each jurisdiction). For questions about this project or data set, please contact Meg Harris at meg@vedaenv.com.

Crude Transport by Rail- Over the past 7-8 years, movement of Bakken Crude and Alberta oil sands products by rail has increased across the Northwest. In Washington alone, crude movement by rail has gone from negligible volumes in 2010, to an estimated 17 million barrels in 2013, to 60 million barrels in 2021.

Mapping Crude Movement Routes- To better understand where and how this material is moving, the Task Force maintains a map of crude movement across the Western States. The map provides the Task Force jurisdictions and stakeholders a snapshot of where crude is currently moving. It can be used to identify areas of high risk for rail spills across the region, and help target preparedness and response planning efforts for this rapidly growing inland crude movement situation. The map was last updated June 2021. Click on the map to enlarge and/or download.

View the 2021 Crude Transport Report here (pdf)

Studies and Reports