Russian Railways sums up Year of the Environment
On 25 January 2018, a videoconference was held at the Centre for Scientific and Technical Information and Libraries of Russian Railways in Moscow to summarise the Year of the Environment at the Company. More than 1,000 railway specialists took part in the event.
The results of the year were summed up by Sergei Kobzev, Deputy Managing Director of Russian Railways. He noted that according to the public, the Company is one of the most environmentally-oriented in Russia.
In her address to the videoconference, for example, Tatyana Gigel, a member of the Federation Council’s Committee on Agrarian and Food Policy and Nature Management, said that the Company was exemplary in matters of environmental safety and stressed the positive role which Russian Railways plays in the environmental education of the younger generation.
Gigel also noted that in 2017, the RZD Holding became an active participant in the All-Russian action “Russia - the Territory of EcoKids - Young Defenders of Nature.” In the framework of the project, all the railway stations in Moscow hosted thematic exhibitions and the educational institutions of Russian Railways held Olympiads and contests.
The Company is also linked to the V. I. Vernadsky Non-Governmental Environmental Foundation through its long-term cooperation. Greeting the participants of the videoconference, Vladimir Grachyov, the president of the foundation, noted that in 2017 the Company won the nomination for the "Vernadsky National Environmental Award" in the category "The City Environment" for its project "The Development of the Moscow Central Ring."
During the Year of the Environment, Russian Railways conducted a number of activities aimed at reducing the negative impact on the environment.
Within the framework of the federal targeted program "Pure Water," the Company constructed and reconstructed 13 facilities for the purification of industrial wastewater with the use of various technologies at facilities in Stavropol, Kursk, Sverdlovsk, Murmansk and Gorky regions, as well as Khabarovsk Territory and Buryatia. Discharges of contaminated sewage into reservoirs were reduced by 400,000 cubic metres.
As part of the "Green Million" campaign, which Russian Railways conducted for the second consecutive year, employees of the Holding's enterprises planted more than 1.2 million trees throughout the country.
To reduce the pressure on atmospheric air, Russian Railways undertook modernisation and switched to alternative energy sources, including heat pumps, solar energy and more than 50 fuel oil and coal boiler plants in Krasnoyarsk, Altai, Transbaikal and Khabarovsk Territories, as well as in Khakassia and Bashkortostan. The Company also introduced 458 units of modern rolling stock and decommissioned 377 units of obsolete equipment. As a result of these measures, emissions of harmful substances into the atmosphere from stationary sources were reduced by 3,000 tons.
Russian Railways also purchased about 5 million units of biodegradable dishes for its Sapsan trains in order to reduce the use of polyethylene packaging.
In addition, the Company is purposefully switching to a reinforced concrete sub-rail base. In 2017, more than 3 million reinforced concrete sleepers were laid. As a result, such sleepers now comprise 84% of the total length of all the main railway routes, which has led to a significant reduction in the consumption of forest resources.
Special attention is also paid to industrial environmental control and ensuring that environmental protection structures at the Company have the modern equipment needed to control the impact of railway transport facilities on the environment. In 2017, the Company's environmental laboratories carried out more than 145,000 measurements at various objects under research.
In total, the Company spent about 5 billion roubles on priority environmental areas in 2017.