As a leading freight carrier, our railroad must invest in the communities we serve, and we must be a responsible steward of our environment.
Adherence to those two principles has enhanced and affirmed our understanding of the connections between our long-term business success and the health of our communities, our environment, and our employees. This sixth annual sustainability report highlights those connections and our commitment to best practices of corporate environmental, economic, and social responsibility.
Trains always have been the most fuel-efficient and environmentally friendly form of surface transportation. Today, we’re working hard to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions even further. Three years into a five-year initiative to reduce carbon emissions per revenue ton-mile by 10 percent, we’ve accomplished nearly 69 percent of the goal. In addition to lowering our locomotive fuel burn, we’re increasing the energy efficiency of railroad facilities all across our system. We’re achieving this through technology, innovation, and, most of all, the ingenuity of our employees, who are dedicated to improving network operating efficiencies.
Beyond operational programs, we are working with private and public partners on carbon mitigation projects. We’re continuing our partnership to help reforest 10,000 acres in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley. We also have directed more of our charitable giving toward forestry management projects that improve the quality of forest ecosystems. Across our 22-state system, Norfolk Southern employees contribute their time, talent, and treasure to volunteer activities that enrich the communities we serve.
Sustainability has become part of the culture of Norfolk Southern, much as safety and service define who we are as a company. We’re fundamentally changing our operating culture to create an even safer, more positive work environment in which our people can excel. This report describes our ongoing activity guided by proven and successful business principles of investing in employees and communities while protecting the environment for future generations.
Chairman and CEO