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Minister welcomes new Sustainable Rail Executive

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Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris MP has welcomed the creation of the new Sustainable Rail Executive (SRE) by RSSB.

The SRE is a pan-industry group of rail industry leaders, committed to Sustainability Leadership who will be responsible for a new Sustainable Rail Strategy. 

Although rail already has strong green credentials, the rail sector and government are keen to work together to do more to address the bigger challenges ahead. These include carbon emissions, the impact on air quality, water and waste. As well as maximising rail’s positive benefits on society, building back the economy, opportunity and empowering mobility. 

RSSB’s role is to support the SRE, creating the debate. They have taken the role of ‘lead developers’ bringing their in-house expertise in environmental sustainability topics such as carbon and air quality, as well as social sustainability, to the wealth of talent and knowhow in organisations across the industry and throughout the supply chain.

This plays to RSSB’s strength in securing collaboration across organisational boundaries on safety, sustainability and standards.

The strategy is expected to feed into formal planning processes and so ensure sustainability is embedded in industry’s thinking.

SRE brings together CEOs and senior leaders from infrastructure managers, passenger and freight train operators, rolling stock leasing companies, manufacturers, suppliers, government and the regulator. It includes specific companies and representative industry bodies and agencies. The group reports into the RSSB Board.

Speaking in his video message for the SRE, the  Minister, Chris Heaton-Harris MP said:

I really do welcome you forming the group to drive progress forward on issues that are important to the planet, for the country, and especially this government. The railway already has a positive story to tell, but ‘comparatively good’ isn’t good enough when we consider the importance of environmental sustainability and the scale of the issues we face. These are urgent issues which need us to work together, and this group to drive collaboration across the rail sector to do just that.”

Chair of the SRE, Malcolm Brown, who is also CEO of Angel Trains, said: 

I’m delighted to build on the work we’ve done with RSSB in the past, and take full advantage of the opportunity to collaborate and inform railway policy and planning in the years ahead. By working together as an industry we can co-create a fresher and more ambitious Sustainable Rail Strategy that joins up all the good work, and paves the way for rail to maximise its potential, and play its part in the UK’s future transport system.”

Watch Chris Heaton-Harris’s video message in full below:

Editors’ Notes

About RSSB

RSSB provides research, analysis, and insight to help the industry work together to deliver a better, safer and more sustainable railway.

As a membership-based rail industry body, RSSB includes train and freight operating companies, infrastructure managers, contractors, rolling stock leasing companies and suppliers. Our work involves partnerships with academia and other railways across the world.

About the SRE

The recent formation and inaugural meeting of the SRE last month, sponsored by the Rail Minister, demonstrates the appetite and willingness across the industry.

Drawn from the Executive committees of leading rail organisations, the SRE will champion a whole industry approach to sustainability.

Outwardly looking, they will influence and shape sector sustainability strategy working with the supply chain in response to Government ambitions.

They will oversee and promote the development of an ambitious, affordable, and coherent sustainability programme to make rail the leading mode of sustainable transport. 

It is particularly important to capitalise on the growing momentum and ensure the industry is appropriately supported with a strategy and programme tailored to tackle the issues at hand.

SRE’s representatives are drawn from: Chiltern Railways by Arriva, Crossrail, Department for Transport, DB Cargo, Eversholt Rail, Firstgroup, HS2, Network Rail, Office of Rail and Road, Rail Operations Group, Rail Delivery Group, Rail Freight Group, Railway Industry Association, RSSB, Siemens, Transpennine Express, Transport Scotland, Transport for London, Transport for Wales.

Link to the Sustainable Rail Executive group page

Download photo of SRE chair Malcolm Brown

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