Friday 24 March 2023

UIC publishes its 2022 Global Rail Sustainability Report

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The results of the first Rail Sustainability Index (RSi) have been rendered into a report, capturing the efforts, performance, and prospects of the rail sector in delivering the UN Sustainable Development Goals. It tells global and regional stories of how the railways are implementing environmental, social and governance action in their businesses and are playing their part in transforming the transport sector.

Notable statistics:

  • 59% of RSi reporting company energy comes from renewable sources
  • More than 290GWh of energy were saved over the last 3 years among the RSi reporting companies
  • Within the RSi reporting companies, waste recycling and re-use rates have risen from 64.9% in 2019 to 77.5% in 2021
  • NOx and particulate matter pollution has reduced by more than 40% between 2005 and 2021 according to data from the Traction Energy and Emissions Database reporting companies

The 2022 Global Rail Sustainability Report is in its first edition and constitutes an open invitation for all rail companies across the globe to collaborate with the UIC Sustainability Platform through knowledge and data sharing, demonstrating rail’s contribution to the sustainable mobility of the future.

The report was developed by the UIC Sustainability team, in collaboration with UIC members and key partners. The report also captures the industry’s cross-cutting efforts to be responsible employers, its impact on cities and communities, and its role in economic development, crisis support and promoting peace.

Moreover, UIC Director General François Davenne highlighted that the report showcases an “impressive range of ways that railways and rail travel is contributing to a more sustainable future, from dramatic improvements to air quality and energy efficiency, to protecting wildlife and improving the gender balance in the workforce. Transport is key to fostering human connection. Now more than ever, the global transport community needs to make a concerted effort to deliver meaningful, systemic change that promotes social, economic, and environmental development and will allow future generations to live in prosperity and in harmony with nature.”

Lucie Anderton, Head of the UIC Sustainability Unit, also stated how rail is already the most sustainable form of motorised transport, with rail companies clearly not resting on their laurels. UIC is aiming to inspire action and showcase rail’s vital contribution to a more sustainable future.

Link to resources
Report document:
Direct link:

For further information, please contact the UIC Sustainability Unit at

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