In on-going discussions with Gov. Jack Dalrymple, officials with the BNSF Railway Company have indicated they are in the early stages of studying the feasibility of building a liquid natural gas processing plant and refueling station to power the company's next-generation locomotives. Dalrymple is encouraging BNSF officials to build in North Dakota if the proposed project moves forward.
BNSF officials also are studying the cost savings from converting locomotives from diesel power to liquid natural gas and the viability of investing in new natural-gas powered locomotives.
The building of a processing plant would create another market for North Dakota natural gas as state and industry officials continue work to reduce flaring. The processing plant and refueling station would also create jobs and other economic activity.
"North Dakota's vast natural gas resources and location within the BNSF rail system would make our state the ideal place to build and operate a natural gas processing plant and locomotive refueling station," Dalrymple said. "We believe that BNSF would benefit by processing their own clean and affordable fuel source and by operating a processing plant and refueling station in such a strategic region of their nation rail service.