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Fuel firm drops bid to transport ethanol through several Boston-area communities

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A fuel company has scrapped a proposal to transport ethanol by train through densely populated communities north of Boston, amid concerns from activists that the highly flammable liquid could be ignited in a derailment or attract would-be terrorists.

Global Petroleum announced the step in a statement on Tuesday, a day after the Legislature moved to outlaw the storage of large quantities of ethanol near populous areas.

Under the plan, the company would have transported ethanol—which is mixed with gasoline to comply with Clean Air Act standards—to its storage terminal in Revere over MBTA commuter rail lines.

The path potentially would have taken the fuel through such cities and towns as Cambridge, Somerville, Everett, Chelsea, and Revere.

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