STB renews charter of RETAC, schedules Oct. 19 meeting

By Erin Voegele | September 29, 2017

The Surface Transportation Board has published notices announcing its intent to renew the charter of the Rail Energy Transportation Advisory Committee and scheduling the next meeting of the RETAC for Oct. 19.

According to the STB notice, RETAC was established in September 2007 to provide advice and guidance to the board and provide a forum for the discussion of emerging issues and concerns regarding the rail transportation of energy sources, including coal, ethanol, other biofuels and petroleum.

The committee consists of 25 voting members, excluding governmental representatives. The membership includes no fewer than five representatives from the Class I railroads; three representatives from Class II and Class III railroads; three representatives from coal producers; five representatives from electric utilities; four representatives from biofuel feedstock growers or providers, and biofuel refiners, processors and distributors; two representatives from private car owners, car lessors or car manufacturers; and one representative from the petroleum shipping industry. The committee can also include up to two members with relevant experience that are not necessarily affiliated with these industries or sectors. Representatives from the USDA, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission may be invited to serve in a non-voting advisory capacity. Meetings are held at least twice a year and are open to the public.

According to the STB, the Oct. 19 meeting of the RETAC aims to continue discussions regarding rail performance, capacity constraints, infrastructure planning and development, and effective coordination among suppliers, carriers, and users of energy resources. Potential agenda items for the meeting include a performance measures review, industry segment updates by RETAC members, a presentation on energy transportation logistics and a roundtable discussion.

The meeting is open to the public. Written comments may be submitted to the RETAC at any time. Additional information on the meeting and how to submit written comments can be found on the Federal Register website.