The backlog of grain shipments across the Plains has been reduced this spring, but U.S. regulators are requiring BNSF and Canadian Pacific railroads to provide weekly updates on their efforts to catch up before harvest.
The U.S. Surface Transportation Board has told BNSF and Canadian Pacific to submit plans to address the backlog and begin filing weekly updates. The order is similar to the updates regulators required on fertilizer shipments this spring after farm groups complained.
The delays in grain shipments have been especially pronounced in northern Plains states, such as North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana and Minnesota.
Mark Watne, president of the North Dakota Farmers Union, said Monday that he remains concerned about the railroads' ability to move enough grain to clear storage space for the harvest.