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Rail News: Amtrak

Amtrak touts its new electric locomotives, sustainability practices


Amtrak's new advanced-technology electric locomotives are now in service along the Northeast Corridor, marking one of the latest components of the railroad's sustainability program, Amtrak officials announced yesterday.

The Siemens ACS-64 locomotives, which will save the cost of about 3 billion kilowatt hours of electricity and cut greenhouse gas emissions during the next decades, are part of Amtrak's commitment to following sustainable practices in its operations, Amtrak officials said in a press release.

Designed for easier maintenance, the locomotives maximize energy efficiency by using a regenerative braking system that feed energy back to the power grid.

"We're proud of our work to provide reliable, energy-efficient transportation, draw more customers to rail, and ultimately reduce the carbon footprint of the traveling public," said Amtrak President and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Boardman. 

Recently, Amtrak signed the International Union of Railways' (UIC) Railway Climate Responsibility Pledge. In signing the agreement, Amtrak committed to reducing energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions; stimulate modal shift to rail in national and international markets; actively communicate climate-friendly initiatives; and publicly report data on energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.

Amtrak also is a member of the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), which reports on climate change initiatives. On its most recent submission to the CDP, Amtrak received a score of 99B. The 99 out of 100 reflects Amtrak's commitment to comprehensive and transparent reporting of greenhouse gas data and climate-related risks and opportunities. The B represents the performance band and measures the company's actions to promote climate change mitigation, adaptation and transparency, Amtrak officials said.

Also, Amtrak's 2015 CDP score was an improvement over its 2014 score of 96B.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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