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Rail News: Sustainability

TransLink issues first 'green' bond to finance new rail lines

The agency will use the bond proceeds to build the SkyTrain's Broadway subway extension, a new light-rail line and a host of other transit projects.
Photo – TransLink's 'Buzzer' blog


TransLink in Vancouver, British Columbia, has issued its first-ever "green bond," the agency announced late last week.

Valued at $400 million, the bond marks the agency's largest bond issuance since it started financing projects through debt capital markets in 2010, TransLink officials said in a press release.

Bond proceeds will fund projects in the agency's 10-Year Vision, the largest transit expansion in Vancouver to date. The plan includes SkyTrain's Broadway subway extension and construction of the new Surrey light-rail line.

Green bonds alert investors that the seller plans to use the proceeds for environmentally friendly initiatives. Although TransLink's conventional bonds already have been used to finance environmentally friendly transit projects, having the green bond designation will bring a higher level of accountability, agency officials said.

TransLink's green bonds also have received a second-party review from independent assurance provider Sustainalytics.

Demand for green bond remains high in the investment community, and the response to TransLink's issuance was "significant," agency officials said. The agency last month announced plans to issue the green bonds.

"TransLink is committed to a sustainable future, and we're lining up all our actions to reflect that," said TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond. "Our customers, our community and our investors want this, and we are responding."

To learn more about other sustainability efforts in the rail industry, read Progressive Railroading's November cover story.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 11/19/2018