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Southern California's Metrolink unveiled a new action plan that addresses climate change, air quality and other sustainability issues to support a goal of zero emissions by 2028.
While the plan includes a framework for improvements over the next decade, Metrolink is embarking on more immediate measures to reduce its carbon footprint.
Currently, a pilot program is underway using a single Tier 2 locomotive to test renewable plant-based diesel fuel that's 100% renewable and sustainable. If the pilot is successful, testing will begin on a single new Tier 4 locomotive. Then, if all goes well with the Tier 4 locomotive, Metrolink plans to transition its entire locomotive fleet to renewable diesel fuel.
Since 2018, the commuter railroad has replaced all its “dirty” Tier 0 trains and currently operates 39 Tier 4 trains that uphold air quality standards from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Metrolink officials said in a press release.
The railroad will also operate and maintain the Redlands Passenger Rail Project or Arrow service using three fuel-efficient Tier 4 diesel multiple units. The project is expected to be completed in early 2022. The San Bernardino County Transportation Authority plans to introduce a hydrogen fuel-cell rail vehicle, which would be the first hydrogen-powered passenger train to operate in the United States.