Rail cargo transport baselines
These baselines are based on data available in NTMCalc 4.0, literature reviews and expert interviews. The settings aim to reflect general rail freight transport. In principle we always recommend use of real data if available at ufficient quality. NTM default data are conservatively assessed and should if used thereby not enable low emission calculations. Furthermore they should promote transport suppliers to present their real data in relation to NTM default data, hence being used in the transport service procurement process.
Rail transport is carried out by electric and diesel trains. The share of electrified rail tracks varies between countries and regions.
Data for rail by diesel is based on NTM average international diesel fuel
Data for rail by electricity are wtw an based on 12 g/kWh (Hydro and wind power), 322 g/kWh (European average based on IEA production data 2020) and 900 g/kWh (coal and oil based production)
The rail challenge is to utilize its capacity advantage where door to door transport aspects should be included since rail tracks not always reaches pick-up and delivery spots.
The actual load factor is another efficiency challenge, i.e. cargo weight in comparison with total gross weight which is often low due to the tare weight of wagons and cargo carrier unit.
In addition to the energy efficiency, electrified rail transport offers zero emissions in the proximity of the trains. In this context it is needed to compare electrified rail (and other electrified solutions) in a well to wheel (wtw) perspective.
Conlogic, USA rail survey
Swedish Transport Administration