American trains – Part 2: Electrics all the rage

Introduction In Part 1 “Trains: The American electric,” what was presented was a portrait – albeit a rather concise one – of the American electric train. The developmental history and reasons for the domestic electric train’s existence were all detailed. Discussion today, meanwhile, centers on the classes or types of these “electrics,” if you will, … Read more

Trains: The American electric

At the time of the electric locomotive’s U.S. debut in 1865, American railroading was, from then on, forever changed. On more than a few rail lines, electricity became the mode-moving method of choice. For those rail enterprises taking the electricity plunge, as long as such remained viable and relevant, said operations were kept operational: electric … Read more

Legal accord forces EPA action to further smog reductions in CA, TX communities, counties

The Environmental Protection Agency agreed today [Feb. 21, 2023] to meet deadlines for reducing smog in parts of California and Texas that have some of the nation’s worst air pollution. Today’s agreement followed a lawsuit from the Center for Biological Diversity and Center for Environmental Health challenging the EPA’s failure to ensure that San Diego County … Read more

UK’s GWR assumes Vivarail’s fast-charging battery trial program

Class 230 Great Western Railway has completed the purchase of a number of assets from emission-free battery and hybrid trains manufacturer Vivarail, which entered administration last December. GWR has agreed [to] contracts to buy intellectual property, rolling stock and equipment relating to the development of high-performance battery and FastCharge technology designed to support wider introduction … Read more

In effort to meet global climate targets, should U.S. be exporting LNG?

Here’s the deal: Based on the myriad observations made and pertinent data gathered by scientists (many of whom are world-renowned, by the way) over the years supporting, with a high degree of confidence, the premise that the earth risks going off the edge climatologically speaking if we don’t get off the human-induced greenhouse gas-emitting track … Read more

Intermodal connectivity key to successful high-speed train operation in the Valley

Okay, I’ll say it: Intermodal connectivity is fundamental to successful high-speed rail operation in California’s San Joaquin Valley on what is now known as the Interim Initial Operating Segment (IOS), a 171-mile-long double-tracked, fully grade-separated high-speed railroad corridor to serve the needs of passengers traveling end to end or on any portion thereof in between, … Read more

Natural gas sure getting its share of attention, lately

These days, there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t notice (witnessing first-hand, seeing or hearing, watching on television) something having to do with air pollution. It figures, doesn’t it?! Just this past Sun., Feb. 5, 2023, in fact, a related story was included in CBS’ “Sunday Morning” lineup. The segment mostly had … Read more

Common-sense approach needed in making fossil-to-renewable sources/supply transition

If there’s one thing you should know about me it should be that I’m not a big proponent of fossil-fuel use. If you’ve been anywhere, where, in the air, there is noticeable smog and/or haze, then you should have an appreciation for why it is, in this context, I feel as I do. This is … Read more

New Biden Administration ‘Mega’ grant program awards millions to transit, passenger rail projects

The below Jan. 31, 2023 press release* is from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) today applauded the Biden Administration for investing nearly $520 million in new grants toward four critical public transit and passenger rail projects in California, Illinois, New York and Pennsylvania. The projects are four of … Read more