OAKLAND, CA â€“ On Tuesday, November 17, 2009, Capitol Corridor joined the Bay Area Air Quality Management District and its partners to mark the beginning of cleaner diesel technology on California railways. The clean air partners held an event to introduce locomotive # 2015, the cleanest passenger locomotive in the nation.
“This event is historic for two reasons: upgrading locomotive 2015 has made it the lowest emitting diesel passenger locomotive in the nation and this is the first time non-transportation dollars were used to invest into intercity passenger rail equipment,” said Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority Managing Director David Kutrosky.
The new engine will operate between Sacramento and the Bay Area along the Capitol Corridor route as well as though the Central Valley on the San Joaquin route.
Many locomotives that travel through the Bay Area are powered by older, inefficient diesel engines that lack advanced pollution controls. Upgrading these engines to current emission standards can cut pollution by approximately 45 percent.
â€œThis repowered locomotive will greatly improve air quality and health in communities located along busy rail lines,â€ said Jack Broadbent, executive officer of the Air District. â€œIt sets a new benchmark for cleaner passenger rail throughout California.â€
In 2008, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency tightened locomotive engine standards for all diesel line-haul, passenger and switch engines throughout the United States. Combined with cleaner fuels and tighter emissions standards, these rules will reduce particulate matter emissions by 90 percent, and oxides of nitrogen by 80 percent, by 2030.
Cleaner transit technology also helps in the fight against climate change–using public transit instead of driving is one of the most effective ways an individual can help reduce their carbon footprint.
â€œWhen you ride a Capitol Corridor train, your trip produces one third of the pollution that is emitted when you drive your car, and this retrofitted locomotive will make your trip even cleaner,â€ Bay Area Air District and Capitol Corridor Joint Powers Authority Board Member Jim Spering said. â€œGetting drivers off the road and aboard trains is a big factor in the clean air equation. And operating cutting-edge technologyâ€”like fuel efficient, clean locomotivesâ€”is a necessary part of the green solutionâ€
Funding of $826,000 was provided by the Bay Area Air District, the Sacramento Metro Air District and the US EPA.
â€œThe Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District is pleased to continue its partnership with the Bay Area to bring more clean locomotives to the Capitol Corridor. This is an important investment in the health of citizens all along this successful route,â€ said Sacramento Air District Executive Director Larry Greene.
# # #