Norfolk Southern and Electro-Motive Diesel, Inc. have entered into a joint venture to test blended biodiesel locomotive fuel. In what both parties are describing as “one of the most extensive testing programs to date on the use of biodiesel fuel for locomotives, ten units—eight EMD SD70M-2 road units and two EMD MP15, all owned by NS, will run in regular service for uo to 11 months to evaluate of performance over a wide range of operating and environmental conditions. Biodiesel’s effect on emissions, fuel consumption, performance, and durability will be evaluated. The fuel blends will range from B10 (10% biodiesel) to B20 (20%).
“Biodiesel fuel, a renewable resource, has been shown to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, hydrocarbons, and particulate matter, while essentially eliminating exhaust emissions of sulfur oxides and sulfates,” said NS Vice President Real Estate and Corporate Sustainability Officer Blair Wimbush. “Norfolk Southern is committed to exploring ways to conduct our business using renewable resources. Our work with EMD will hopefully result in an environmentally sensitive, domestically-produced fuel option for the rail industry.”
“This demonstration is a part of EMD’s work in further reducing emissions and improving the efficiency of our locomotives and our environmentally friendly two-stroke engine.” said EMD President and CEO John S. Hamilton. “We look forward to working with NS on efforts to positively impact the environment and decrease U.S. dependence on foreign oil.”