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Rail News: Norfolk Southern Railway

Norfolk Southern unveils 'Eco' locomotives at Chicago intermodal site


Norfolk Southern Railway yesterday dedicated a new fleet of environmentally friendly "Eco" rail-yard locomotives at its 47th Street intermodal facility in Chicago.

Photo credit: Norfolk Southern Corp.
The engines are branded Eco for their operating efficiency in reducing emissions and fuel consumption. They were funded with more than $19 million in grants through the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ), which made the $30 million public-private partnership to replace Norfolk Southern’s entire Chicago yard locomotive fleet possible, NS official said in a press release.

"These locomotives will be rolling billboards in Chicago for years to come of one of the finest examples of collaboration between public and private partners to think and act big on diesel emission reduction technology," said NS Vice President Mechanical Don Graab. "The bottom line is cleaner air quality for Chicago residents. We thank the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, the Illinois Department of Transportation, and the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning for their partnership in helping us achieve this goal for our locomotive fleet."

The 3,000 horsepower engines meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Tier-3 emissions standards for locomotives. The units are expected to prevent the release of 7.58 tons of particulate matter and 196 tons of nitrogen oxides pollutants annually while using less fuel compared with older switching locomotives. 

The Class I plans to have 15 of the locomotives at its five major Chicago rail yards by year's end. NS designed and built the locomotives at its Juniata, Pa., locomotive shops, using components from Electro-Motive Diesel, a division of Progress Rail Services.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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