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National Gateway Wins Support of Major Environmental Groups

Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Conservation Fund and Ohio Environmental Council Join Growing Coalition of Supporters

Washington, DC December 3, 2009 The National Gateway today announced that the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, The Conservation Fund and the Ohio Environmental Council have joined the over 100-member coalition of supporters. The endorsement of these leading environmental groups confirms the significant environmental benefits of the $850 million public-private-partnership, which seeks to create a highly efficient double-stack rail route between Mid-Atlantic ports and the Midwest

Support from environmental leaders like the Ohio Environmental Council show that the National Gateway is not only an investment in our transportation system, its an investment in our environment, said Ohio Governor Ted Strickland. Expanding the use of freight rail means a reduction in fuel consumption and less carbon emissions and that means long-term benefits for the state and region.

By facilitating the greater use of freight rail for the long-haul movement of goods, the National Gateway will save nearly 2 billion gallons of fuel and eliminate 20 million tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Additionally, it will decrease truck traffic on the nations highways by over 14 billion miles, reducing congestion and highway maintenance costs.

The National Gateway is an example of how a transportation solution can have positive impacts on environmental and energy goals, said Roy A. Hoagland, vice president for environmental protection and restoration, at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Freight rail projects like the National Gateway can play an important role within the transportation system to move goods more efficiently and in a manner that will improve our overall environment and quality of life.

The National Gateway improves the environment by allowing freight cargo to be double-stacked on trains. Double-stack clearances allow trains to carry nearly twice as much freight on the same number of trains. Already, trains can move a ton of freight more than 436 miles on a single gallon of fuel, making rail transportation three times more fuel-efficient than over-the-road alternatives. A recently released report from the Federal Railroad Administration confirms that double stack freight rail transportation is up to five times more efficient than motor carrier transportation.

Every ton of freight moved by rail instead of by truck means more energy savings, less greenhouse gases and other emissions, and more jobs and investment in Ohio and the Midwest, said Jack Shaner, deputy director of the Ohio Environmental Council. The National Gateway is an investment that will help move Ohio and the nation in the right direction.

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