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Norfolk Southern Corp. released its annual sustainability report that details the company's efforts at improving locomotive fuel economy, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving operating safety and customer service, and increasing workforce diversity.The 2014 report, "Connections," reflects the railroad's "commitment to conduct business as a responsible corporate citizen," said Bruno Maestri, vice president government relations, corporate communications, and corporate sustainability officer."Through the efforts of our people, the company has made measurable progress on its sustainability journey during the past year," he said in a press release.Among its environmental achievements in 2014, NS: • reached 85 percent of a goal to reduce locomotive greenhouse gas emissions by 10 percent per revenue ton-mile of freight;• improved locomotive fuel efficiency by 2.2 percent, conserving nearly 11 million gallons of diesel; and• completed 93 percent of a $5.6 million commitment to reforest 10,000 acres in the Mississippi Delta that eventually will absorb the equivalent of nearly 20 percent of the railroad's annual greenhouse gas emissions.Among its economic performance achievements, NS:• contributed $2.3 billion in employee payroll and more than $6.3 billion in purchases, other payments, and local and state taxes across the railroad's 22-state network;• invested $2.1 billion in capital projects to maintain the franchise and expand business opportunities, including completion of a $160 million expansion of Moorman Yard in Bellevue, Ohio, to enhance network efficiencies and customer service; and• nearly tripled the number of minority-, women- and small-business suppliers from 2011 through 2014.The report also noted that NS donated $13.2 million to educational, cultural, environmental and human service organizations through the Norfolk Southern Foundation; and hired 380 military veterans and record numbers of women as conductor and management trainees.
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