Transportation report seen as unfair
April 9, 2001
By Canadian Consulting Engineer
The Railway Association has objected strongly to a recent report that suggested that in 20 years' time road transpo...
The Railway Association has objected strongly to a recent report that suggested that in 20 years’ time road transportation would be more environmentally friendly than rail transportation in terms of harmful emissions.
Bill Rowat, president and CEO of the association has said that rail transportation is still by far the most fuel-efficient mode of surface freight transportation, and will improve even more in the future with technological advances. According to a report in Eco-Log Week, Rowat points out that rail already performs 63% of the freight workload in Canada, while generating just 14% of freight greenhouse gas emissions and 3.9% of all transport GHG emissions.
Rowat is planning to meet with the authors of the report, the North American Commission for Environmental Co-operation (NACEC), to question their findings and the assumptions underlying their comparisons. For example, the report had assumed that truck emissions of nitrous oxide particulates would drop to one-tenth of current levels over the next 20 years, but overlooks the fact that rail emissions of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide will be one-tenth those of truck transport.