Sustainability in action:

A Norfolk Southern ‘River Star’

Norfolk Southern is committed to reducing its footprint on the environment, part of its pledge to be a good corporate neighbor and environmental steward. Ray Jones, a 32-year railroader, lives that commitment.

Ray Jones’ environmental stewardship took root while growing up on the Elizabeth River in Norfolk, Va., our headquarters’ city. As a youth, he spent much of his free time on the water and saw firsthand the damage imposed by years of industrial pollution and neglect.

“I’ve seen the river change over the years, and I’ve realized I can do something to make a difference,” Jones said. As assistant division manager of Mechanical Operations at our Lamberts Point export coal transload facility, Jones is doing just that.

Since returning to the waterfront facility in 2002 from Roanoke, he has helped oversee the railroad’s efforts to improve the river’s water quality. That includes construction of a multi-million-dollar stormwater reclamation project, and a “Hydrocyclone” filtration system that removes coal particles and pollutants from stormwater runoff.

In addition, he supported efforts to establish artificial oyster beds offshore of the terminal, to foster the restoration of oysters in the river. He has also been involved in our plans to develop a living shoreline that will restore wetlands and natural habitat. He is one of the terminal’s points of contact for the nonprofit Elizabeth River Project, the Virginia Oyster Restoration Center, and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation; conservation groups working to protect and conserve the commercial and recreational waterways on the river and bay.

Jones’ efforts helped Lamberts Point achieve Model Level status in the Elizabeth River Project’s River Stars program, the organization’s highest designation for business members.

To recognize his commitment, Norfolk Southern selected Jones as its nominee for the 2012 John H. Chafee Environmental Excellence Award, sponsored by the Association of American Railroads. Jones and five other railroaders from the nation’s largest railroads were recognized at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., for demonstrating the highest level of environmental stewardship during 2012.

The 425-acre Lamberts Point facility is the largest marine coal export terminal in North America. Recognizing the environmental and economic benefits of reusing stormwater runoff from the property, Jones helped oversee Norfolk Southern’s development of a $1.3 million stormwater reclamation project. In early 2013, the terminal installed a hydro-cycling feature, an infrared filtration system that removes coal particles and other impurities before sending the water into a holding tank where additional contaminants are removed. The reclaimed water, nearly clean enough to drink, is used to spray coal cars during dumping to minimize dust and to clean coal conveyors.

The project is leading to the reuse of more than 1 million gallons of stormwater every month and helping Norfolk Southern conserve water. It is reducing the railroad’s use of municipal water by an estimated 18.3 million gallons annually.

“We’ve had huge savings in our use of city water,” Jones said. “Plus, we’re saving the river’s ecosystem by capturing the stormwater runoff and reusing it.”

Ray Jones

Ray Jones

site map  /  reports archive  /  ns sustainability home  © 2013 Norfolk southern

sustainability in action:

Creative thinking reduces energy use – and costs

Through our InnovatioNS program, Norfolk Southern encourages employees to look for ways to make their work safer, more efficient, and more cost effective. Brian Thomas’ ingenuity has saved the company money and contributed to its sustainability efforts. read more >

sustainability in action:

Committed to a greener workplace

Employees at Norfolk Southern have embraced the railroad’s sustainability efforts. At many locations across the system, employees such as Emily Hunter have taken the initiative to launch recycling and other green initiatives. read more >

sustainability in action:

A Norfolk Southern ‘River Star’

Ray Jones, a 32-year railroader, is committed to helping Norfolk Southern meet its pledge to be a good corporate neighbor and environmental steward. read more >

Creative thinking reduces energy use – and costs

>

Committed to a greener workplace

>

A Norfolk Southern ‘River Star’

>

See all of our sustainability in action case studies

sustainability in action:

Keeping locomotives moving down the track

Norfolk Southern is continually looking for ways to increase the efficiency and productivity of operations. Devina Miller has played a key role in a Mechanical Department initiative dubbed Mission Critical. read more >

Keeping locomotives moving down the track

>

See all of our sustainability in action case studies

sustainability in action:

A little effort, a lot of food for those in need

To strengthen the communities our railroad serves, Norfolk Southern promotes and supports employee volunteerism. Many employees, like Amanda Carpenter, volunteer their time, treasure, and talents to build community connections. read more >

sustainability in action:

Building community partnerships

Norfolk Southern strives to be a good corporate citizen. The railroad routinely partners with local, state, and federal government officials on projects that benefit communities and the country. Employees such as Ed Sites and David Dize are the ones who make these partnerships work. read more >

sustainability in action:

In pursuit of a dream

Norfolk Southern ensures that employees have ample opportunities to develop their skills and advance their careers. Jerome Perry is taking advantage of an NS program to further his education. read more >

sustainability in action:

Where good health meets good deeds

As part of its employee wellness program, dubbed WellNS, Norfolk Southern in 2011 introduced Power Train, an initiative that combines physical fitness and charitable giving. Misty Braden organized a Power Train team in Knoxville to help fund breast cancer research after a colleague was diagnosed with the disease. read more >

sustainability in action:

Partnering for safety

Safely operating our railroad is Norfolk Southern’s No. 1 priority. In addition to efforts to keep our employees safe on the job, we partner with communities in various ways to promote public safety. Employees Richard Vaughan and Greg Valentine demonstrate that commitment. read more >

A little effort, a lot of food for those in need

>

Building community partnerships

>

In pursuit of a dream

>

Where good health meets good deeds

>

Partnering for safety

>

See all of our sustainability in action case studies