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Oil shipped by rail through Northwestern U.S. unusually volatile

Oil moving through Oregon has contained six times more propane – the same stuff in backyard gas grills – than comparable types of crude.

Despite the risks, the oil isn’t required to go through simple steps to stabilize it when it’s extracted from the ground. Producers can flare off the propane and other gases in it. But then they have less to sell and their profits suffer.

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