New rail freight link between Hirtshals and European hubs launched

New rail freight link between Hirtshals and European hubs launched
© portofhirtshals.dk

Cooperation between DB Cargo Scandinavia, the Port of Hirtshals and Nordjyske Jernbaner introduces an environmentally friendly alternative to road transport.


In cooperation with the Port of Hirtshals and Nordjyske Jernbaner, DB Cargo Scandinavia has successfully launched a pilot project to create a new freight train connection from the Port of Hirtshals to various intermodal terminals in Europe and Norway. The new route aims to shift a significant amount of trailer traffic from road to rail, which promises significant environmental benefits in reducing CO2 emissions and heavy vehicle traffic.

The pilot project has demonstrated the feasibility of rail as a sustainable and competitive alternative to road transport. With a potential saving of 1,600 kg of CO2 per trailer on routes such as Hirtshals to Duisburg in Germany, the initiative is in line with wider environmental objectives. It helps to reduce traffic on the Jutland Corridor.

The test train demonstrated the viability of a regular rail service, scheduled to start in December 2024. It will connect to a network of 220 terminals in Europe via the DB Cargo Group and 12 terminals in Norway via CargoNet. The connection will offer competitive prices and efficient transport times, with a lead time of around 20 hours from Hirtshals to Duisburg. In addition to supporting traditional freight, the rail service will facilitate the transport of CO2 to the future hub at Hirtshals for storage and transport to depleted oil and gas fields in the North Sea from 2025. 

"With the test train, we and our partners have shown that a climate-friendly rail connection to Hirtshals is possible. Our aim is to offer our customers a fixed connection between Hirtshals and the European continent from December 2024," said Birgit Wirth, CEO DB Cargo Scandinavia.

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