Large amounts of natural gas can now be transported via trains in the U.S. due to a new federal rule created by the Trump administration.
Environmentalists and a number of other people and organizations are saying this could lead to lethal "bomb trains" that could explode into as big an explosion as Hiroshima, per Rolling Stone.
These groups are trying to reduce the amount of natural gas allowed to be transported on trains, so as to minimize any unwanted risks.
Groups are suing the Trump administration
Entire towns could be blown up if one of these so called "bomb trains" explodes passing through them. One of the nonprofit organizations in the lawsuit is Earthjustice, and it is saying that just 22 trains filled with natural gas exploding could equate to the same damage as Hiroshima.
Alongside Earthjustice are a quarter of U.S. states and the district of Washington D.C., who are all suing as well.
The total of 15 entities against the Trump administration state that the new federal rule is unlawful in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act, per Rolling Stone.
ICYMI – “bomb trains” carrying liquefied natural gas have enough power to “level whole cities” if they explode.— Food & Water Watch (@foodandwater) August 29, 2020
True to form, Trump wants to create a new rule allowing these trains to run through densely populated areas, with little to no restrictions. https://t.co/FKR5sDXqVF
As it stands, liquified natural gas is transported through static pipelines over long distances. These can also be disrupted and explode, but in the event that they do, these pipelines are typically placed in non-residential areas as they cross miles and miles of land. Unlike train lines that pass through villages, towns, and cities regularly.
Moreover, these pipelines rarely rupture, but when they do they don't typically ignite as its pressurized gas, which doesn't light up into fire, per Popular Mechanics.
Another method is on boats, again, with much less contact or proximity to large groups of people, so if anything untoward occurs fewer people are injured.