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Rail News: Amtrak

Amtrak signs on for Carbon Disclosure Project, reaches bronze status under APTA sustainability program


Amtrak recently joined the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a non-profit group that provides a global system for organizations and cities to measure, disclose, manage and share environmental information.

The railroad's membership solidifies its commitment to improving energy efficiency, reducing fossil fuel consumption, and attracting more automobile and airline travelers to rail, according to a press release.

For its first submission to the CDP's Climate Change Program, Amtrak will report its greenhouse-gas inventory from 2010, 2011 and 2012, as well as its climate change strategy.

"In our business, lower emissions and energy use are worthwhile targets and are indicative we are making the right kinds of improvements in our operations," said Amtrak President and Chief Executive Officer Joe Boardman in a prepared statement.

Meanwhile, Amtrak recently achieved the bronze level of the American Public Transportation Association's "Sustainability Commitment" by completing a sustainability inventory, implementing green initiatives, and setting various goals for reducing fuel use in locomotives and electricity at facilities. Amtrak was one of the program's founding signatories in 2009.

Among Amtrak's green initiatives: purchasing 70 electric locomotives that feature regenerative braking systems for the Northeast Corridor; improving train-handling techniques by locomotive engineers; and reducing locomotive idling time by reducing automatic stop/start devices.

The railroad has reduced energy consumption, as well. Amtrak facilities used 3.7 percent less electricity in fiscal-year 2012 compared with FY2011, and 42 percent less natural gas in FY2012 versus FY2010.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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