Thursday 20 July 2023

New UIC IRS 30345 “Environmental specifications for new rolling stock” to boost ambition for sustainability requirements in procurement of future rolling stock

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This spring, UIC kicked off the technical project that addresses the environmental specifications for new rolling stock. The project will update the existing UIC Leaflet 345, published in 2006, into a new IRS (International Railway Solution) with greater ambition. The general remit is to embed emerging trends and perspectives, including circularity, into the new IRS, however the project will also tackle all other sustainability topics, such as energy consumption, noise emissions, exhaust emissions and materials/recycling/waste, thus covering the whole value chain.

This project brings together four financial participants from the European region, namely FGC, FS, NS and NR (though this can be extended to include members from other UIC regions), and its purpose is to provide UIC members with up-to-date guidelines for the sustainable procurement of new rolling stock, in line with the most recent international standards, regulations and legislation. In particular, the European Union’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive, which enters into force in 2024, will be used as a guideline to select the relevant environmental and sustainability topics, including:

  • sustainable management of raw materials;
  • circular design;
  • circular material flows entering new rolling stock manufacturing;
  • reuse of spare parts;
  • sustainable maintenance practices;
  • other recommendations on sustainable procurement and technical specifications for energy efficiency, noise emissions, exhaust emissions and other environmental impacts.

The project group will rely on the collaboration and input of experts from other UIC sectors and working groups (coordination across all Sustainability Platform sectors and its special activities, and Rail System’s Rolling stock, Train, Track Interaction, and Energy sectors) as well as using existing research, knowledge and requirements, such as those from Eurospec (circular requirements for rolling stock), to ensure that the resulting document includes input from all fields of expertise and relevant railway working groups and stakeholders, such as Railsponsible, Eurospec and Unife.

Additionally, the final document will feature regional annexes to meet the specific needs of UIC members globally and will foresee revision clauses to ensure that the sustainability specifications align with the most recent trends and technical standards on an ongoing basis.

It is still possible to join this project to help ensure that the greatest number of UIC member companies can access a harmonised set of sustainable and circular specifications for new rolling stock procurement and find supporting guidelines for their purchasing processes – and to take the next step forward towards circular and climate-friendly trains.

For more information, check out the project webpage at or contact

or Isabelle de Keyzer at

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