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VIA Rail Canada’s Montréal Maintenance Centre Recertified ISO 14 001


VIA’s Montréal Maintenance Centre, the largest in VIA Rail Canada’s network, recently obtained ISO 14001 recertification for its Environmental Management System. This international standard aims at encouraging the continual improvement of ecological performance. First granted in 2001, the certification was renewed for a 3-year period after the maintenance centre successfully passed an independent audit. Result: after six years under ISO 14001, the Montreal Maintenance Centre has become a model for sustainable operations and continues to generate benefits for the environment and VIA Rail’s clientele.

A permanent process, that leaves nothing to chance

The same ISO certification has already been granted to the Crown corporations’ Winnipeg (Manitoba), Vancouver and Mission (British Columbia) maintenance facilities.

Montréal Maintenance Centre Director, Claude Bellware, points to the inherent benefits of ISO 14001 certification: “Our environmental commitment is a daily concern. As a result, we have developed a ”green mentality“ that guides every aspect of our work. We remain strongly proactive and handle each situation of non-compliance with a set of elaborate, well-documented and innovative processes. Not only do we comply with regulations, we aim to surpass them as well. This has led to many significant results.”

One such process involves removing and reusing grease and solid residues through the centre’s wastewater treatment system. In addition, the past two years have seen a 50% reduction in the use of chemical products A system has also been put in place to recycle brass, copper, aluminium, wood, fabric, leather, rubber, paint and solvent.

“Our success is due to the extraordinary commitment of our employees,” says Mr. Bellware. “Their enthusiasm has led to some very original ideas, like our Green Corners, where just about anything can be recycled.”

As Canada’s national passenger rail service, VIA Rail Canada’s mandate is to provide efficient, environmentally responsible and cost effective passenger transportation services, both in Canada’s busiest corridor and in remote and rural regions of the country. Serving more than 450 communities with a network of inter-city, transcontinental and regional trains, demand for rail services continues to grow as more Canadians turn to train travel as a safe and convenient travel choice.


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