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DB Cargo Italia Shifts to Eco-Friendly Fuel, Aiming for Climate Neutrality by 2040

DB Cargo Italia Shifts to Eco-Friendly Fuel, Aiming for Climate Neutrality by 2040
photo: Volker Emersleben / DB AG / Public domain/Combustion of biofuel (left) releases only the CO2 absorbed during the plant's growth
19 / 04 / 2024

DB Cargo Italia is pioneering a significant environmental initiative by transitioning its entire fleet of diesel-powered locomotives to hydrotreated vegetable oil HVO by the end of summer, marking a critical step in Deutsche Bahn's broader strategy to achieve climate neutrality by 2040.

This move positions the Italian subsidiary at the forefront of the group’s sustainability efforts, significantly ahead of the EU’s European Green Deal timeline. HVO, a renewable biofuel, is seen as a sustainable alternative to traditional diesel, promising to reduce the carbon footprint of railway freight services without compromising performance.

According to Patrick Bertman, Head of Product & Pricing Strategies at DB Cargo, this transition is essential not only for lowering environmental impact but also for aligning with DB’s ambitious goal of reducing CO2 emissions, which have already been cut by nearly 70% over the past three decades.

Source: DB Cargo / Public domain

DB Cargo Italia's locomotives operating near Cervignano and Brescia have been using HVO since January 25, 2024, with plans to expand this practice to Turin and the Anagni depot shortly. The transition to HVO was spearheaded by Massimo Leone, Head of Rolling Stock Management at DB Cargo Italia. "By using HVO in Italy, we are not only choosing an environmentally friendly alternative fuel for our locomotives but also proving that we can successfully implement sustainable innovations in rail transport," said Leone.