CP Rail signs purchase deal for 35 Green Goat hybrid locomotives
Canadian Pacific Railway plans to purchase 35 Green Goat(R) Series hybrid locomotives over a four-year period from RailPower Technologies, of Vancouver. Under the agreement, seven of CPR's yard locomotives will be converted in 2005 to quiet, low-emission hybrid locomotives during 2005 and used at CPR's Calgary operations as part of more rigorous long-term testing. Another 28 Green Goats would be converted over the following three years if the first hybrids meet performance guarantees and if the technology performs well in further testing in adverse winter conditions.
"The Green Goat performed well in our first round of testing, last year," said Neal Foot, CPR's senior vice-president of operations, adding, "We need to do more testing in strenuous conditions to prove the hybrid's robustness before taking delivery of the others." CPR conducted a three-month demonstration trial of a Green Goat(R) in 2004 in Vancouver, Calgary and Moose Jaw. This test confirmed the fuel, emissions and operational benefits of RailPower's hybrid locomotives.
CPR's yard fleet consists of approximately 220 low-horsepower locomotives built in the 1950s. Although its fleet of road freight locomotives is one of the youngest in North America, replacement components are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain. Adding the Green Goat hybrid locomotives will help CPR modernize its fleet with more fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly and powerful locomotives.
"The Green Goat technology offers potential for a cost-effective solution to renewing CPR's yard locomotive fleet," Foot said. "Our studies indicate operating cost savings approaching $4 million annually should we acquire all 35 Green Goat hybrids. In addition, the capital cost is significantly lower than acquiring new locomotives and is competitive with acquiring used conventional locomotives."
Operating cost savings would result from lower maintenance requirements and fuel consumption, as well as higher productivity. CPR tests indicate the Green Goat is as much as 60% more fuel-efficient than conventional yard locomotives, with a commensurate reduction in greenhouse gases. The hybrid uses plug-and-play modular components which can be quickly replaced in the field, minimizing in-shop repair time and increasing fleet utilization. The Green Goats will be assembled by Alstom at Calgary shops leased from CPR.
In addition to being significantly quieter than diesel locomotives, the Green Goat meets the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Tier 2 standards for particulate matter in exhaust emissions, which came into force in 2005. RailPower Technologies also recently reported that California's Air Resources Board (CARB) has approved the company's application for its Green Goat locomotives to be given the Board's designation of Ultra-Low-Emission Locomotive (ULEL). The Green Goat hybrid switcher is the only locomotive to be given this designation, said the company.
More information is available from Nigel Horsley at RailPower, 604/904-0085, ext 215.