ProRail, NS, Eurostar, Avanti West Coast and Youth for Sustainable Travel have unveiled plans to run a special Climate Train to the COP26 Climate Summit in Glasgow.
The event is scheduled to take place in October.
Almost six years after the Paris Climate Agreement was signed, more focus on ‘sustainable mobility’ including rail is needed according to European Commission vice-president, Frans Timmermans, who consciously chooses to take the train to Glasgow.
Travelling to London by Eurostar instead of plane emits up to 93 per cent less CO21 per passenger and a freight train can replace an average of 56 trucks.
Despite the sustainable advantage of trains, only seven per cent of all passengers and 11 per cent of all goods in Europe travel by rail.
Yet, with its 200,000 kilometres of track, Europe has one of the most intricate networks in the world.
Timmermans said: “What could be nicer than travelling by train to an international climate summit?
“The train is sustainable and provides a lot of comfort, whether you travel for work or pleasure.
“More and more passengers in Europe are recognising the advantages of travelling by rail.
“We want to increase this number in the coming years by, for example, doubling the amount of high-speed train traffic and making international rail travel even easier.
“I am really looking forward to leaving for Glasgow by train with our delegation.”
The idea to travel to COP26 through Europe by rail started as a successful grassroots movement by Youth for Sustainable Travel in cooperation with rail operator ProRail.
The Climate Train then became a reality thanks to collaboration with carriers Eurostar, NS and Avanti West Coast (who were planning a service to the conference in Glasgow).
The initiative is also supported by CER – the Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies.
Rail to the COP will bring together as diverse a group as possible from all over Europe.
Young people, official delegations, mobility experts, NGOs and representatives of the railway sector are invited to travel by Eurostar from Amsterdam, Rotterdam or Brussels to London, where they will change to an Avanti West Coast train to Glasgow.
During the trip, Youth for Sustainable Travel and the rail partners will organise a series of debates and seminars to draw attention to the important role that rail, and sustainable travel can play in achieving the global climate change goals.