Northrail switches its diesel fleet to alternative fuels

Northrail switches its diesel fleet to alternative fuels
© Northrail

Three supplementing options were chosen as alternatives to the standard diesel.

Northrail has recently approved its fleet of diesel locomotives to switch to the use of alternative fuels. This initiative is part of Northrail's ongoing efforts to adapt its operations to more environmentally friendly practices.

By modifying existing locomotives, Northrail aims to decrease its carbon emissions and reliance on traditional diesel. This adjustment involves both technical modifications to the locomotives and training for operational staff to handle new fuel types effectively.

Northrail has announced the specific alternative fuels that will be utilized in their diesel locomotives. The fuels identified for this purpose include Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO), Fatty Acid Methyl Ester (FAME), and Gas-to-Liquid (GTL) fuels. These options were chosen for their ability to significantly reduce the carbon footprint of locomotive operations compared to traditional diesel fuel.

HVO is a renewable diesel produced from vegetable oils or animal fats, known for its high-quality and ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. FAME, commonly referred to as biodiesel, is made from vegetable oils or fats and is used to extend or replace mineral diesel. GTL, meanwhile, is a synthetic fuel created from natural gas through a conversion process that produces a clean-burning diesel alternative.

These fuels are part of Northrail's strategy to adapt to more sustainable energy sources while maintaining the efficiency and reliability of their rail services .

The decision also reflects Northrail's strategy to maintain compliance with increasingly stringent environmental regulations. The shift to alternative fuels is expected to have practical benefits in terms of fuel efficiency and reduced maintenance costs, owing to the cleaner-burning properties of many alternative fuels.

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