DB Cargo UK has launched its ‘Freight belongs on rail!’ campaign in a bid to support the Governments key aims for achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Teaming up with some of Britain’s largest businesses, DB Cargo UK who are the largest rail freight company in the country are pushing for the Government to set a legally binding target for a future modal shift.
The campaign also aims to encourage other businesses to follow suit moving transportation from road to rail.
The campaign has been launched to rail industry stakeholders during the official opening of DB Cargo UK’s brand new £7 million rail terminal which is based in Cricklewood, North London.
The rail terminal will support some of the largest infrastructure projects such as HS2 and the ongoing transformation of Brent Cross.
1.5 million tonnes of aggregates and construction spoil will be imported and exported through the new terminal, which would otherwise have been transported by road. A train can carry the equivalent of 76 HGV’s and creates 75% less carbon emissions which is a great example as to why the Government should be doubling its efforts in the encouragement of rail freight usage.
DB Cargo UK’s campaign will see their existing customers, some of those being the biggest businesses in Britain lobby the Prime Minister to move forward with a target for future modal shift.
DB Cargo UK CEO Andrea Rossi said: “Freight belongs on rail. The more goods and materials we can get off the road and onto rail will reduce congestion, significantly cut carbon emissions and improve air quality – some of the UK’s Government’s key objectives in its drive to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
“With the recent publication of the Williams-Schapps Plan for Rail and the well-documented challenges currently being faced by road hauliers, there has never been a better time for Government to promote rail freight as the way forward.
“Setting down in legislation a legally binding target for UK modal shift, like has already been done in Scotland, will provide the confidence and certainty needed to unlock sustained investment in rail freight going forward.
“It will also drive greater ownership and accountability, as well as encouraging greater collaboration and innovation – behaviours we have already seen from rail freight operators and their customers following the UK Government’s publication of its target for decarbonisation,” he added.
“Some of Britain’s best-known construction companies, supermarkets, steel manufacturers and car makers are already enjoying the economic and environmental benefits of using rail freight and we will be working closely with them in the months to come to carry the message to other businesses who would benefit from changing their existing transport strategies,” said Mr Rossi.
“It will, however, take a collaborative effort by all stakeholders involved – Government, regulators, the rail companies, industry bodies and customers – to deliver the policies and reforms necessary to unlock rail freight’s true potential,” he added.
Andy Bagnall, Director General at the Rail Delivery Group, said: “Moving more freight by rail helps businesses deliver, frees up space on congested roads and prevents unnecessary carbon emissions, supporting a clean, green economic recovery from the pandemic.
“Now is the time for government to build on these benefits – an ambitious rail freight growth target will unleash further private sector investment to improve connectivity and deliver economic and environmentally-friendly benefits,” he added.
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