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UK rail service introduces 'carbon free' trains

UK rail service introduces 'carbon free' trains

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Schenker is planning to open several wind farms in order to help power UK rail services through renewable energy.

DB Schenker Rail UK has said it is developing 'carbon free' rail services for customers using trains hauled by electric locomotives that will leave a small carbon footprint.

The British rail freight company has proposed working with Renewable Energy Systems (RES) to build three wind turbines on its land at Margam in South Wales, which could help provide renewable energy resources for the public transport and rail networks.

The energy generated by the proposed turbines would be implemented to power a fleet of DB Schenker Rail Class 92 electric locomotives. It would also be sold to Network Rail, the UK's infrastructure operator for use in overhead power cables -- which would allow the 'carbon free' service to begin by the end of the year.

This would connect London to Scotland on the West and East Coast, and to Wales on the Great Western Railway lines eventually -- through a far smaller carbon footprint than UK transport currently creates.

Alain Thauvette, Chief Executive of DB Schenker Rail UK, said:

"Deutsche Bahn wishes to reduce its carbon emissions by 20 percent by 2020. This proposal is a significant step forward in delivering this carbon reduction target in the UK, while enabling DB Schenker Rail to provide its customers with Eco Solutions to reduce their carbon emissions."

Planning approval will be sought for the scheme early this year, and may become a step further in the UK government's campaign to cut carbon emissions across the country -- as well as potentially entice environmentally aware consumers to prefer DB rail services.

Image credit: Simon Pielow

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Charlie Osborne

Contributing Editor

Charlie Osborne is a freelance journalist and photographer based in London. In addition to SmartPlanet, she also writes for business technology website ZDNet and consumer technology site CNET. She holds a degree in medical anthropology from the University of Kent. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure