Frequently Asked Questions

Does EIA have data on the movement of crude oil and ethanol by rail and truck?

EIA has published several articles on the volumes of crude oil, refined petroleum products, and ethanol transported by railroads and trucks within the United States; see Learn more section below. However, we do not publish this data on a regular basis.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 due to 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. In addition, large volumes of crude oil inventories and pipeline take-away capacity constraints at Cushing, Oklahoma 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. 

The petroleum and ethanol movement data that EIA currently collects only includes volumes transported by pipeline, tanker (ship), and barge. We have no plans at this time to expand this data collection to include rail and highway transport. EIA is not aware of another government source that publishes these data.

Learn more:

Rail is Likely Supplying an Increasing Share of East Coast Crude Oil
New Traffic Patterns Emerge to Supply Crude Oil to West Coast Refiners
Rail delivery of U.S. oil and petroleum products continues to increase, but pace slows
Rail traffic reflects more oil production, less coal-fired electricity generation
Upcoming Pipeline Capacity Additions Will Facilitate Continued Growth in Crude Oil Shipments from Midwest to Gulf Coast
Planned Changes to U.S. Crude Oil Pipeline Infrastructure Should Relieve Cushing Bottleneck
 Rail deliveries of oil and petroleum products up 38% in first half of 2012
Rail delivery of crude oil and petroleum products rising
The Latest Twist in Oil Price Patterns
Crude oil movements from Midwest to Gulf Coast on the rise
Shifting Crude Oil Movements in the Mid-Continent
Cushing inventories: taking a deeper look
Market response to the WTI-Brent spread is constrained by logistical challenges

Last updated: September 20, 2013


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