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GE Transportation Launches EPA-Compliant Train To Meet Updated Emissions Standards

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(Photo: Stock.xchng)
(Photo: Stock.xchng)


  • New GE Evolution train first to meet Tier 4 emissions standards
  • GE invested $600 million to design and test train
  • Evolution train does not require use of urea or costly fueling centers

GE Transportation, a unit of GE and one of the world’s leading railroad industry suppliers, has unveiled its new fuel-efficient, diesel-electric Evolution locomotive, which is designed to meet the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) strict new Tier 4 emissions standards.

Developed by a team of multi-disciplinary engineers as well as experts who carefully consulted with many of GE’s top rail customers, the new locomotive is said to lower particulate emissions by up to 70% and NO2 emissions by 76%, representing the largest reductions in history.

To date, GE has invested $400 million in the project and has set aside an additional $200 million to refine and test the research, design and engineering needed to meet heightened EPA standards over the next two years.

Saving railroad customers more than $1.5 billion in infrastructure and operational costs, GE’s new locomotive will be the first to meet EPA standards with technological advancements, rather than alternatives that require special exhaust additives. Relying on urea exhaust additives to meet Tier 4 emissions standards would require a costly and extensive network of fueling stations across North America.

GE Transportation President and CEO Lorenzo Simonelli says: “GE Transportation continues to challenge what is possible and reshape the future of the rail industry in the US. Thanks to the tireless effort of our employees and collaboration with our customers, we are the first in the industry to offer a solution that meets the next phase of the EPA’s emissions standards.”

One Step Ahead of The Competition

By not adding yet another fluid to the existing list of chemicals required to maintain trains, GE’s Evolution locomotive helps maintain their leadership status and stay ahead of rival Caterpillar Inc's Electro-Motive Diesel train unit.

Additionally, Navistar International Corp recently halted its attempt to develop a compliant urea-free engine due to extensive delays in winning EPA approval. Instead, the company indicated it would start buying engines from Cummins Inc that use urea.

Key Statistics - World Railroad Market (source: MarketLine)

  • Between 2007 and 2011, the global railroad sector reached a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 5%, generating more than $370 billion in total revenue.
  • From 2011 to 2016, the sector’s performance is expected to accelerate even more rapidly with an anticipated CAGR of over 6%, resulting in total revenue of $500 billion by year-end 2016.
  • The sector’s most productive segment in 2011 was freight, which reached nearly $194 billion in revenue or more than 52% of overall value.

By Laurie Juliano-Bachara for
Laurie Juliano-Bachara is a Chicago-based writer who covers the latest topics in professional services, entertainment and business news.

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