Frequently Asked Questions

Does the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) have data on the movement of crude oil and ethanol by rail and truck?

EIA has published articles on the volumes of crude oil, refined petroleum products, and ethanol transported by railroads and trucks within the United States (see learn more below), but EIA does not publish this information or data on a regular basis.

EIA is aware that there has been an increase in the volume of crude oil transported by rail in the past several years. The increased use of rail for transporting oil is a result of the increases in crude oil production in North Dakota, Texas, and other states, which have exceeded the capacity of existing pipelines to move oil from these areas to refineries in other areas of the country. Large volumes of crude oil inventories and pipeline take-away capacity constraints at Cushing, Oklahoma have also contributed to increases in the use of rail for transporting oil. Ethanol is mainly transported by rail from ethanol producing facilities to blending and export terminals. 

EIA currently only collects data on volumes transported by pipeline, tanker (ship), and barge.

Learn more:

Rail shipments of oil and petroleum products through October up 13% over year-ago period

Crude delivered by rail continues to supply West Coast refineries

Rail is likely supplying an increasing share of East Coast crude oil

Articles on rail transport

Analyses of petroleum market

Last updated: December 12, 2014


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