In terms of energy and land use, railways offer the greatest efficiency of all land-based transport modes. East Japan Railway is continually working to reduce the power consumption of its systems. It has introduced new reduced-weight railcars that utilize regenerative braking for greater efficiency. The company has also developed the world’s first hybrid prototype train with improved energy performance. In sum, more than 85% of East Japan Railway’s railcar fleet is energy efficient. Comparing the carbon dioxide emissions of East Japan Railway at approximately 15 grams of CO2 per passenger kilometer with the emissions of private automobiles at approximately 175 grams of CO2 per passenger kilometer, the environmental advantages are clear.
East Japan Railway is working to reduce CO2 emissions of the entire transport system by promoting intermodal transportation, which combines rail with other modes of travel. To support this initiative the company is offering discounts on rail and rental car combinations, providing more parking spots at its station sites, and working with travel agents to encourage train tours rather than bus tours. The company is also beginning to install photovoltaic solar systems on some of its stations to reduce the impact of on-site energy use. Areas for improvement include developing standards for the use of green building principles in its property development and train station remodels.
To the best of our knowledge the above information is accurate and was obtained from sources we believe to be reliable. Neither the information presented above nor any opinion expressed shall be construed as an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy the security. The views expressed are those of portfolio management as of 1/31/13 and may not reflect current opinions or subsequent events.