New tracks and rail car storage may be coming to Cargill, Inc in O'Neill. The company is looking to expand its rail storage with a railroad track expansion project along the existing railroad track line located southeast of O’Neill. The proposed project is to expand the existing Cargill Industrial site by adding enough additional track to store an entire 110-unit train. Currently, BNSF has a single main-line track main-line that parallels the Cargill Industrial Site to the south. Cargill has an approximately 4,300 linear foot, loading/unloading track (Track A) that parallels the main-line track to the north. The project includes the following: (1) The existing Track A will be extended east for approximately 3,600 linear feet, (2) A new track segment (Track B) approximately 4,000 linear foot in length, will be constructed paralleling Track A to the north. Track B would serve as a new auxiliary track for the storage of rail cars, and re-connect to Track A approximately 4,000 linear feet to the east, (3) A new track segment (Track E) approximately 700 linear feet in length, will be constructed paralleling Track A to the north. Track E will be constructed approximately 600 linear feet east of the end point of Track B.
“The purpose and need for the proposed project is to expand the Cargill industry track to store an entire 110-car unit train to improve Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroads’ (BNSF) efficiencies and provide better delivery and transportation services on an existing rail line in O’Neill.”
The Nebraska Department of Environment and Energy will review the proposed project for state certification.
The decision whether to issue the USACE permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impacts including cumulative impacts of the
proposed/completed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits, which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal, must be balanced against their reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. In addition, the evaluation of the impact of the work on the public interest will include application of the guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency, under authority of Section 404(b) of the Clean Water Act (40 C.F.R. Part 230).