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VIA Rail exceeds Kyoto targets


- and underlines contributions to Canada’s efforts to curb global warming -

MONTREAL - Passenger rail is helping Canada meet tough targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs), and proving itself as a sustainable passenger option for the future, VIA Rail Canada told observers and delegates attending the UN Climate Change Convention in Montreal yesterday.

Mike Greenberg, VIA’s Vice-President, Environment, Procurement and Real Estate set out VIA’s current and future environmental goals during a panel discussion organized by the Railway Association of Canada.

“The Kyoto Protocol calls for a 6% reduction in GHGs below 1990 levels by 2012,” Mr. Greenberg said. “Even though we are carrying more passengers, VIA has already cut GHGs by 11% since 1990, and cut fuel consumption per passenger km by 28%. The environmental benefits of passenger rail as an alternative to other, less efficient modes of travel leads us to believe that the potential for the future is significant.”

Transportation is a major source of GHGs in Canada, and 50% of “personal” GHGs - those generated by personal activities - comes from people using road vehicles for travel.

“The equation is simple,” Mr. Greenberg said. “The more people who travel by train, the better off we are in terms of the environment. VIA works continually to enhance rail services, believing that the passenger rail mode has the potential to divert many hundreds of thousands of car trips annually, considerably reducing annual overall transportation GHG emissions.”

VIA Rail Canada operates passenger rail services across the country on behalf of the Government of Canada. Serving more than 450 communities coast-to-coast, VIA’s goal is to provide Canadians with a safe, efficient and environmentally sustainable and responsible passenger service. For more details on VIA Rail Canada’s products, services and fares contact VIA Rail Canada at 888-842-7245 (888-VIA Rail) or visit


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