HS1 aims to be first UK railway to run entirely on renewable energy

Bosses at HS1 - the high-speed railway link running across the county - are looking to make the service the first in the UK to run entirely on renewable energy.

The company, which operates the track linking London to the Channel Tunnel , has secured Renewable Electricity Guarantee of Origin certificates from its electricity supplier npower which will mean its future power source will come only from the likes of solar and wind power.

High-speed services using HS1 will see their carbon footprint reduced
High-speed services using HS1 will see their carbon footprint reduced

It will allow it to report zero-carbon emissions for the power it uses to power both trains and stations.

The company is working with its international operator, Eurostar, and domestic operator Southeastern High Speed to reduce the carbon footprint of every passenger by 25% and to cut energy per train journey by 10%.

Dyan Crowther, CEO of HS1 Ltd, said: “HS1 is the 'green gateway' to Europe. The UK’s only high-speed railway already delivers phenomenal environmental benefits to the UK and beyond. We are helping consumers reduce their carbon footprint while still enjoying safe, fast and reliable travel at home and abroad.

“As we recover from the Covid crisis, environmental challenges will move further up the political and public agenda, and HS1 can provide a lasting solution to sustainable travel.”

Ms Crowther was speaking at the launch of HS1 Ltd’s sustainability strategy alongside Chris Heaton-Harris, Minister of State at the Department for Transport.

HS1 chief executive Dyan Crowther
HS1 chief executive Dyan Crowther

Rail Minister, Chris Heaton-Harris, said: “We are absolutely committed to driving forward a greener, cleaner and more efficient railway, and it is fantastic to see HS1 making such significant strides towards decarbonising their network.

“Offering passengers more sustainable, greener forms of transport is crucial to achieving our bold and ambitious vision for a net zero carbon transport system by 2050.”

HS1 Ltd also pledged that it would send no non-hazardous waste to landfill by 2022 and to recycle 90% of all waste by 2023. It will contribute 700 hours of staff time each year to local community and charity initiatives.

Eurostar recently confirmed none of its services would be stopping at the Ashford or Ebbsfleet international stations until 2022 as a result of a drop in demand due to the health crisis.

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