BPG welcomes European Year of Rail

Transporting a TEU container from China to Vienna usually takes 35 days by sea and costs 30,000 euros. By rail it is twice as fast (14 days) and, at 5,000 euros per TEU, six times cheaper than by water. This is shown by studies conducted on behalf of Breitspur Planungsgesellschaft.

Deloitte: 500% growth in rail transport volume forecast by 2030

Even before the pandemic and the unfortunate incident at the Suez Canal, a Deloitte study predicted a 500% increase in rail freight transport between Asia and Europe by 2030. More than 3,000 goods trains already run between Asia and Europe each year, with the majority of goods travelling by rail as far as Central and Eastern Europe before being transferred by road to their destinations. The further rail can transport goods, the greater the environmental benefit.

Each tonne of freight emits 21 times less CO2 by rail than by road

Rail transport is by far the lowest-emission type of transport. Every tonne of freight transported by rail causes 21 times less CO2 than by road. This means that rail transport has the lowest share of CO2 emissions in freight transport and still has a lot of potential to absorb additional traffic. Two continents are connected in the most ecological way: By rail.

Launch of the European Year of Rail

With the European Year of Rail, the EU Commission is putting rail in the spotlight across the entire continent this year. This is because rail transport plays an important role in the goal of climate neutrality by 2050 and thus also in the European Green Deal. Rail transport in the EU is responsible for only 0.4 percent of transport-related greenhouse gas emissions. So far, however, only about eleven percent of freight transport is carried by rail. Through the European Year of Rail in 2021, the EU Commission wants to contribute to increasing the share of rail transport.

Importance of rail freight transport for Austria's climate targets

Shifting the rapidly growing transport volume from trucks, planes and cargo ships to rail is a sustainable and innovative solution for Austria to achieve the Paris climate targets. As the BPG's environmental report shows, a broad-gauge railway extension can reduce truck traffic in the east of Austria by 1,100 trucks per day - and thus save CO2, relieve the roads and reduce noise levels accordingly.

The aim of the European Year of Rail must therefore be for politicians to not only focus on passenger transport but also recognise the advantages of long-distance freight transport by rail.

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