I was not happy with the MnDOT Rail Plan, and let them know, particularly that it is not OUR job, “we the people,” to pay for upgrades and safety measures required due to the super volatile Bakken BOOM! oil, and today the Gov. stood up to the railroads.

Here are my Comments:


Here’s that Draft Rail Plan, comments were due Tuesday:

Draft MN State Rail Plan

From today’s STrib, Gov. Mark Dayton is leaning on the railroads:

Dayton pressures railroads to pony up for safety upgrades across Minnesota

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Gov. Mark Dayton is giving railroad companies a tongue-lashing for resisting his tax plan to fund safety improvements.

Seven trains haul North Dakota crude across Minnesota daily. The Democratic governor has suggested a series of tax changes and fees on railroads to upgrade railroad crossings and improve first responder training to prepare for a major accident.

Railroad companies like BNSF Railway have balked at those proposals and suggested they may violate federal laws by singling out their industry.

Dayton brought officials from towns with heavy train traffic to St. Paul Friday to ramp up pressure for his plan. Dayton says railroad companies’ opposition to pay more for safety improvements is “totally unacceptable.”

Majority House Republicans have also signaled they’re not on board with the governor’s proposal.

pjm-xmsnmapAn old PJM map, some transmission built since, some plans abandoned, like MAPP!

Today PJM released its “State of the Market” report, and this is something that everyone in the MISO region should read because afterall, that’s their “Target Market.”

2014 State of the Market Report for PJM Posting Date
mmu,report,reports,somVolume I
Volume I (2MB PDF) contains the introduction.Volume II
Volume II (14MB PDF) contains detailed analysis and results.


2014-2013 PJM Peak Demand

And here’s the MISO LMP map so you can see just what the electrical market is doing in real time:



Four years ago today nuclear reactors at Fukushima Daiichi started melting down.

fukushimareactors1… same type of reactor that it is in Monticello, along the Mississippi River, upriver and just northwest of the Twin Cities.

Four years later…

Japan Radiation Map

Four years later…

Some residents to ‘come home to Fukushima disaster zone

The government says about 138,000 Fukushima residents are still living in temporary accommodation.

At a meeting Sunday, Miyakoji residents were told that radiation contamination levels had lowered sufficiently for their return to the area — though some voiced concern over existing radiation levels despite decontamination efforts around some communities.

Four years later…

Navy sailors have radiation sickness after Japan rescue

Four years later…

Navy Sailors Possibly Exposed to Fukushima Radiation Fight for Justice

In March of 2011, the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan rushed to Japan to help after the disastrous tsunami. Since then, many sailors from that ship have fallen ill, possibly as a result of exposure to radiation from the Fukushima nuclear meltdown. They will soon have their day in court.

The court decision came in the mail a few weeks later. The class-action lawsuit, the court ruled on Oct. 28, may proceed. Oral arguments are scheduled to begin on Feb. 26.

The complaint is 100 pages long and contains the names of 247 sick sailors along with details pertaining to reactor construction, water samples taken, Navy tactics and Japanese politics. It assails company greed just as it does the negligence of those who built the Fukushima reactors — and goes on to censure global politics and the cynicism of humankind. A kind of Old Testament fury infuses the text, and the complaint is so sweeping that it almost loses track of its true target. The USS Ronald Reagan appears therein as humanity’s last ship. An aircraft carrier. A ship of ghosts.



And what are the Comments about?  Here’s the Plan:

Draft MN State Rail Plan


Why does it take as long for media to pick up an explosion and long burning waste disposal site near Williston, ND as it does for a train derailment in Ontairo?

Here’s the poop on yesterday’s (3:20 a.m.) explosion in Williston:

KXNEWS, ND: Waste Disposal Ste near Williston Explodes

Valley News: Dangerous Fire Breakes Out at Waste Disposal Site South of Williston Explosion razes waste disposal site near Alexandria , which has the most details:

A fire so massive that it could not be approached by firefighters erupted after an explosion at an oil waste disposal site north of Alexander, North Dakota. According to KXNews, McKenzie County Emergency Manager Karlin Rockvoy said the only thing to do at first was watch the fire burn itself out.

The explosion occurred at approximately 3:30 a.m. Emergency responders from both Williston and Alexander established a perimeter around the site to ensure the safety of anyone in the area. Five employees at the facility escaped unharmed, one of whom reported jumping out of the way just in time.

Firefighters were able to get the flames under control by midmorning, though the cause of the explosion is still unknown.

The complex, which undertook the treatment and disposal of oilfield waste, was completely destroyed during the incident. According to the Bismarck Tribune, Rockvoy reported that any damage caused by the explosion was contained by a surrounding embankment.

The waste disposal site was owned by Tervita, a company which specializes in dealing with industrial waste while focusing on environmentally conscious solutions. The facility was operated by Republic Services, which recently acquired Tervita, LLC, a subsidiary of Tervita Corporation. The merger heightened Republic Services’ presence in the oil and gas waste sector.

Bismarck Tribune: Explosion at oil and gas waste disposal site contained

Google this and find all of five media posts…