The Rail Delivery Group (RDG) is calling on the UK government to introduce policies that will help shift freight from road to rail in order to ensure a greener economic recovery.
In its report ‘Rail Freight: Building a stronger, greener future for Britain’, the RDG outlines a series of policies the UK government should support if it wants to eliminate congested roads and cities, support the levelling up agenda and achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
According to RDG research, rail freight delivers 2.45bn GBP (2.86bn euros | 3.37bn USD) in economic and social benefits to the UK every year. In addition, each tonne of freight transported by rail produces 76 percent less carbon emissions compared to road transportation with one freight train replacing the equivalent of up to 110 lorries. Altogether, rail freight removes the need for 7m lorry journeys a year.
The RDG is calling on the government to make better use of capacity on the network by allowing more freight to run on rail, upgrade Britain’s infrastructure to make it fit for the digital age, and work with the rail industry to incentivise businesses to switch their goods from road to rail.
It’s also requesting that the government establish an efficient logistics sector which has hubs and terminals in the right places, with strong rail connectivity to help avoid a road-led recovery, and commit to investing in the infrastructure required to decarbonise rail freight – including a long-term rolling programme of railway electrification.
Finally, it’s asking that the future industry structure supports rail freight growth and unlocks continued third-party investment that will allow rail freight operators to deliver greater long-term economic and environmental benefits.
“Throughout the pandemic the railway has played a vital role in transporting goods and keeping supermarket shelves stocked. As we enter the recovery phase, our roads and cities are once again becoming congested. If government wants to realise its commitment of net zero in 2050 and grow the economy, it has to put in place the policies to incentivise the shift from roads to railways for both goods and people.”
HS2 has signed the Rail Supply Group’s Work Pipeline Visibility Charter and will share its rail systems' technical specifications publicly.
The ‘High Speed Rail (Crewe-Manchester) Bill’ – HS2 Phase 2b Western Leg – will be introduced in parliament today (24 January 2022).
Network Rail is about to start a new trial project to improve lineside biodiversity on the West Highland Line.
As the first phase of the Elizabeth line trial operations comes to an end, passenger services are set to begin in the first half of 2022.
HS2 has chosen TK Elevator to manufacture and install approximately 160 lifts and 130 escalators at its four main stations.
Overnight engineering work begins on 24 January to improve the railway line between Dawlish and Holcombe in Devon.
HS2 archaeologists have excavated a vast roman settlement in Northamptonshire - one of over 100 sites HS2 has examined since 2018.
HS2 has published its Net Zero Carbon Plan, which sets out how it plans to make the project net zero carbon from 2035.
HS2 has revealed the first images of its 1.5 mile-long Greatworth tunnel - one of three ‘green tunnels’ to be built in Bucks and Notts.
Experts from industry and academia are developing an on-board system that can identify low adhesion hazards such as leaves on the line.
Balfour Beatty VINCI (BBV) has launched a recruitment drive to support HS2 construction works planned for 2022 and beyond.
Network Rail has begun track, bridge and station works designed to improve services for travellers between London and Anglia.
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Electrification of the railway line between Kettering and Market Harborough on the Midland Main Line to begin on 24 December 2021.
The first of 56 giant concrete piers for the Colne Valley Viaduct has been cast. Once complete, this will be the UK's longest rail bridge.
Engineering works will take place at Salisbury to check the alignment of the new track laid after the collision at Fisherton Tunnel.
Siemens Mobility has been awarded the contract to deliver signalling works for the Carstairs remodelling project in Scotland.
The contract to design, build and maintain the HS2 rolling stock fleet for Phase 1 London-Birmingham has gone to the Hitachi Rail-Alstom JV.
Transport for the North (TfN) has launched a transport decarbonisation strategy for the north of England - the first of its kind.
As part of an initiative to help tackle period poverty, Network Rail has begun offering free sanitary products at Leeds station.
The first tunnel boring machine working on HS2 in the Midlands launched on 2 December, excavating a one-mile tunnel in Warwickshire.
Arriva Group, which owns the Chiltern Railways operating company, has signed a six-year National Rail Contract with the DfT.
Transport for Wales (TfW) has taken delivery of the first of 35 Stadler Class 231 FLIRT trains ahead of testing.
Stanton Precast has been awarded the contract to deliver three 'green tunnels' for HS2 by the main works contractor EKFB.
The ORR has published its Rail Industry Finance report for 2020–21, showing that the sector is recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.
Network Rail is creating a special bridge for endangered wild hazel dormice in Lancashire in a bid to grow their populations.
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Work on HS2’s Old Oak Common 850-metre-long station box has begun. The reinforced concrete structure will form the station's frame and base.
Regular train services resumed on the Dartmoor Line between Exeter and Okehampton this past weekend after a 50-year hiatus.
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Jonn Elledge laments COP26's focus on electric vehicles to the exclusion of all other modes of transport, including the cleanest of them all.
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Alstom and Eversholt Rail have signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at the development of 10 three-car hydrogen trains for the UK.
Hitachi Rail and Angel Trains have agreed to retrofit batteries on to TransPennine Express Nova 1 intercity trains.
The Office of Rail and Road has published its Signalling Market Study, launched in November 2020, to improve competition in the sector in GB.
Hitachi Rail and ScottishPower have signed a three-year deal for 100 percent renewable electricity (wind, solar, hydro-electric).
East Midlands Railway's Eastcroft depot near Nottingham is being upgraded to the tune of two million GBP. Works will be complete in June 2022.
The RAIB said wheel slide was at play in the collision between a SWR and a GWR service at Salisbury Tunnel Junction on 31 October 2021.
Network Rail and GWR are trialling a new information service designed to enable passengers to make more informed decisions.
Commuting into London lags behind rest of the UK says RDG, putting the recovery of London’s shops, theatres, restaurants and bars at risk.
The Railway Industry Association is asking the UK Government to urgently publish an update of its Rail Network Enhancement Pipeline.
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HS2 has published a shortlist of bidders for the Phase 2a Design and Delivery Partner contract. The winner will be announced next summer.
The Railway Industry Association (RIA) has set out six key actions for UK Government ahead of its Spending Review next week.
A new report says that protecting light rail services is key to ensuring towns and cities recover from the impact of Covid-19.
London’s Night Tube will resume service on the Central and Victoria lines from 27 December on Saturdays and Sundays.
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Network Rail has awarded Hitachi Rail and Linbrooke S a contract to design a digital signalling solution for the Gloucester area.
After a 50-year hiatus, the Dartmoor Line will resume regular passenger services between Okehampton and Exeter St Davids next month.
New figures from the Office of Rail and Road show that UK rail travel started to rebound between April and June 2021.
A footbridge made from super-strong fibre-reinforced plastic has been installed in Bicester to replace a footpath level crossing.
Scotland’s First Minister has said that decarbonising transport, including rail services, can help reduce the threat of climate change.
HS2 tunnel boring machine ‘Florence’ has passed the one mile mark, cutting through a mix of chalk and flint beneath the Chiltern hills.
Network Rail has announced a £25m plan to protect the Newport-Gloucester line from further damage caused by extreme weather.
Vivarail’s next-gen battery train will be launched at COP26 this November, and will run daily services throughout the event.
The British government's Operator of Last Resort will run Southeastern services, following a £25m breach of the franchise agreement.
HS2 has invited six bidders to tender for a major two-part enabling works contract for its recently approved Phase 2a section.
The amount of freight moved across the Uk's railway has returned to pre-pandemic levels according to new Office of Rail and Road statistics.
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Network Rail has completed upgrades at Hayes & Harlington station ahead of the Elizabeth line opening in the first half of next year.
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New research by the Rail Delivery Group has highlighted the negative effect new commuting habits could have on city centre economies.
HS2 has confirmed the shortlist of bidders to build its control centre and rolling stock maintenance depot.
The Office of Rail and Road (ORR) has published its interim report into the cracks found in Hitachi's Class 800 trains.
RAIB has made recommendations to London Underground in its report into a fatal accident that took place at Waterloo Underground station.
Network Rail's completed signalling work on new track near Peterborough that will divert freight trains under the East Coast Main Line.
New open access operator Lumo will offer direct, fully electric rail services between London and Edinburgh starting at £14.90 for a single.
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Network Rail has chosen Thales Ground Transportation to develop and trial fibre-optic acoustic sensing technology.
HS2 Ltd has published revised images of the Adelaide Road headhouse in Camden, after changes were made to the design.
National Rail has launched Alert Me by WhatsApp, which gives passengers real-time personalised travel information via the messaging app.
Images of HS2’s Chesham Road rural headhouse, which will provide emergency access to the 10-mile-long Chiltern tunnel, has been unveiled.
Network Rail is delivering works to prevent the tracks between Crewe and Chester from flooding as part of the Great North Rail Project.
23 new signals and 109 pieces of associated signalling equipment have been installed around Trafford Park under the Great North Rail Project.
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The 13-mile electrification project between Wigan and Bolton has been given the go-ahead by the British government.
Specialist divers are pouring underwater concrete to protect two major West Coast main line railway viaducts in Carlisle.
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Transport for Wales has signed an agreement with Colas Rail UK for the purchase of Pullman Rail Ltd, which operates from its Cardiff depot.
SCS JV has signed the first of two contracts for the production of tunnel segments that will be used to construct HS2’s London tunnels.
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Hybrid cars built in the Midlands will soon be carried to continental Europe via an eco-locomotive that runs on hydro-treated vegetable oil.
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