Switching & Terminal

From Plastic Waste to Fuel—Improving the Environment

It’s not the plastic water bottle that causes the most harm to sea birds, but the cap, which is mistaken for food. A non-profit in Hawaii ensured that more than 1.2 million plastic caps and lids will never get into the environment and harm sea birds by taking action to collect and recycle them. But this is no ordinary type of recycling, which aims to turn a plastic product back into another plastic product with the addition of more plastic.

OmniTRAX: Building Business in Brownsville

OmniTRAX is bringing the Rail-Ready Sites program to its 45-mile Brownsville & Rio Grande International Railway (BRG) in Cameron County, Texas. The Broe Group affiliate is partnering with Greater Brownsville Economic Development Corp. (GBEDC) to connect rail-served properties with customers interested in locating in the area—near the Port of Brownsville and Mexico.

RSI: Three New Board Members; Brewin Appointed to RSAC

The Railway Supply Institute has elected Tricia Charles, Jeff Lytle and Harrison Wadsworth to its board of directors for three-year terms beginning Jan. 1, 2021. As well, RSI Vice President Government and Public Affairs Nicole Brewin was appointed to the Federal Railroad Administration Rail Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC).

Association News: ASLRRA Connections Convention a ‘Virtual’ Success; MARS Awards 17 Scholarships

The American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association’s (ASLRRA) Virtual Connections Convention held earlier this month drew nearly 600 attendees with more than 130 speakers and 40-plus exhibitors. Additionally, the Midwest Association of Rail Shippers (MARS) has awarded scholarships to 17 college undergraduates as part of an annual program.

Staggers at 40: A Rail Market ‘Allowed to Work Where Competition Exists’ (UPDATED)

Forty years ago today (Oct. 14, 1980), President Jimmy Carter signed the Staggers Rail Act into law. The landmark legislation partially deregulated the U.S. rail industry, and created “today’s nimble, resilient rail network … built upon a rock-solid foundation,” noted Association of American Railroads President and CEO Ian Jefferies. It enabled railroads to enter into contracts with shippers and set rates without Interstate Commerce Commission approval.