EDMONTON, Sept. 27, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI)
announced today it is testing two mainline diesel-electric locomotives
fuelled principally by natural gas in revenue service in northern
Keith Creel, executive vice-president and chief operating officer, said:
"CN launched this locomotive test to explore the use of natural gas as
a potential alternative to conventional diesel fuel. This reflects CN's
continuing drive to look for ways to improve operating efficiency and
advance the company's sustainability agenda.
"Natural gas has a lower carbon content compared with diesel fuel, so
that locomotives using natural gas - if the railway technology
employing this form of energy ultimately proves viable - would produce
significantly fewer carbon dioxide emissions."
CN retrofitted the diesel engines in two 3,000-horsepower Electro-Motive
Diesel (EMD, a subsidiary of Progress Rail Services, a Caterpillar
Company (NYSE: CAT)) -- SD40-2 locomotives to run on natural gas using
conversion kits supplied by Energy Conversions Inc. (ECI) of Tacoma,
Wash. ECI says the hybrid fuel locomotive will reduce carbon dioxide
emissions by 30 per cent and nitrogen oxide emissions by 70 per cent
over a locomotive duty cycle. Click on here to view the locomotive set.
The retrofitted locomotives, using 90 per cent natural gas, with 10 per
cent diesel fuel for ignition, are paired with a natural gas fuel
tender, or specially equipped and protected tank car, between them. The
tender was upgraded by a unit of Chart Industries, Inc., (NASDAQ:
GTLS), located in New Prague, Minn. Natural gas fueling is being
provided by Encana Corporation (TSX: ECA) (NYSE: ECA).
The natural gas fuelled locomotives are testing on the 300-mile run
north of Edmonton to Fort McMurray, rail gateway to the oil sands
region of northern Alberta. Fueling and maintenance take place in
CN is also working with EMD, Westport Innovations Inc. (TSX: WPT)
(NASDAQ: WPRT) and Gaz Métro Transport Solutions (GMTS), a wholly owned
subsidiary of Gaz Métro, on a longer term project to explore a
state-of-the-art natural gas railway engine and a standardized railway
CN will provide two 4,300-horsepower SD70M-2 EMD locomotives for the
test program. EMD, in addition to the engine conversion, will supply
technical expertise to integrate the natural gas engine, related
components and controls into the locomotive, including Westport™
high-pressure direct injection (HPDI) technology and natural gas fuel
system technologies. GMTS will develop natural gas liquefaction
requirements and distribution systems. An innovative natural gas tender
for this initiative will be jointly developed by the project partners.
The CN-led group expects to conduct engine laboratory tests in 2013 and
to roll out the prototype main-line locomotives for road tests in 2014.
As part of the project, Westport secured a funding commitment of C$2.3
million from the Canadian government's Sustainable Development
Technology Canada program to develop the HPDI technology for
CN leads the North American rail industry in fuel efficiency, consuming
close to 15 per cent less fuel per gross-ton-mile overall than the
industry average. CN's lower fuel consumption results in significantly
fewer greenhouse gas emissions.
CN - Canadian National Railway Company and its operating railway
subsidiaries - spans Canada and mid-America, from the Atlantic and
Pacific oceans to the Gulf of Mexico, serving the ports of Vancouver,
Prince Rupert, B.C., Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile, Ala.,
and the key metropolitan areas of Toronto, Buffalo, Chicago, Detroit,
Duluth, Minn./Superior, Wis., Green Bay, Wis., Minneapolis/St. Paul,
Memphis, St. Louis, and Jackson, Miss., with connections to all points
in North America. For more information on CN, visit the company's
website at www.cn.ca.
Certain information included in this news release constitutes
"forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States
Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and under Canadian
securities laws. CN cautions that, by their nature, these
forward-looking statements involve risks, uncertainties and
assumptions. The Company cautions that its assumptions may not
materialize and that current economic conditions render such
assumptions, although reasonable at the time they were made, subject to
greater uncertainty. Such forward-looking statements are not guarantees
of future performance and involve known and unknown risks,
uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results or
performance of the Company or the rail industry to be materially
different from the outlook or any future results or performance implied
by such statements.
Important risk factors that could affect the forward-looking statements
include, but are not limited to, the effects of general economic and
business conditions, industry competition, inflation, currency and
interest rate fluctuations, changes in fuel prices, legislative and/or
regulatory developments, compliance with environmental laws and
regulations, actions by regulators, various events which could disrupt
operations, including natural events such as severe weather, droughts,
floods and earthquakes, labor negotiations and disruptions,
environmental claims, uncertainties of investigations, proceedings or
other types of claims and litigation, risks and liabilities arising
from derailments, and other risks detailed from time to time in reports
filed by CN with securities regulators in Canada and the United States.
Reference should be made to "Management's Discussion and Analysis" in
CN's annual and interim reports, Annual Information Form and Form 40-F
filed with Canadian and U.S. securities regulators, available on CN's
website, for a summary of major risks.
CN assumes no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements
to reflect future events, changes in circumstances, or changes in
beliefs, unless required by applicable Canadian securities laws. In the
event CN does update any forward-looking statement, no inference should
be made that CN will make additional updates with respect to that
statement, related maters, or any other forward-looking statement.
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