Indian Railways (IR) is working in mission mode to become the largest Green Railways in the world and is moving towards becoming a “net zero carbon emitter” before 2030. Railways is guided by a holistic vision of being an environment friendly, efficient, cost effective, punctual and a modern carrier of passengers as well as freight in order to serve the growing needs of New India.
IR is looking at helping the environment with steps ranging from massive electrification, water & paper conservation, to saving animals from being injured on Railway tracks.
Capturing the economic benefits of electric traction in an accelerated manner, Railways has planned to electrify balance Broad Gauge (BG) routes by December, 2023 to achieve 100% electrification of BG routes. Head-On-Generation systems, Bio-Toilets and LED lights recreate the train itself into a travel mode that’s kinder to the environment while maintaining comparable passenger comfort.
IR’s Dedicated Freight Corridors are being developed as a low carbon green transportation network with a long-term low carbon roadmap, which will enable it to adopt more energy efficient and carbon-friendly technologies, processes and practices. IR is implementing two Dedicated Freight Corridor projects viz. Eastern Corridor (EDFC) from Ludhiana to Dankuni (1,875 km) and Western Corridor (WDFC) from Dadri to Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (1,506 km). Sonnagar-Dankuni (538 km) portion of EDFC has been planned for execution on Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode.
IR’s network and reach enabled movement of Freight, like Food Grains & Oxygen in pandemic, even while being more environment friendly as compared to Road transport. During the period April 2021 to May 2021, the Indian Railways moved 73 Lakh tonnes of food grains and has run 241 loaded Oxygen express trains, moving 922 loaded tankers, thereby transporting 15,046 tonnes of oxygen to various part of the country.
Green certification mainly covers assessment of parameters having direct bearing on the environment, such as, energy conservation measures, use of renewable energy, Green House Gas emission reduction, water conservation, waste management, material conservation, recycling etc. 19 Railway Stations have also achieved Green Certification including 3 Platinum, 6 Gold and 6 Silver ratings. 27 more Railway Buildings, Offices, Campuses and other establishments are also Green certified including 15 Platinum, 9 Gold and 2 Silver ratings.