Wednesday 7 October 2009
Sustainable Development

Best rail energy saving solutions for the future presented at the Energy Efficiency Days 2009 conference

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From 23-26 September the Energy Efficiency Days 2009 in Tours, France took place gathering more than 250 energy and railway experts from all over the world. The participants shared information, good practices, expertise and new technologies on how to improve the energy performance of the rail sector.

The conference was organised by the UIC, SNCF, the Railenergy project and the TRAINER Consortia - under the high patronage of Mr Jean-Louis Borloo, French Minister of State, Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and the Sea, responsible for green technologies and climate negotiations.
The Energy Efficiency Days 2009 Conference provided the participants with an insight view of the latest development of railway energy efficiency, international energy and climate change trends, energy saving programs and case studies, metering and billing of energy; energy management systems, decision support systems and Eco-Driving. This unique conference comprised the Railenergy intermediate conference, the 4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference and the TRAINER final conference. In addition technical visits provided practical hands on experiences for the participants.
The first day of the Energy Efficiency Days 2009 was dedicated to the EU-funded Railenergy project and opened by the deputy Mayor of Tours, Mr. Gernot, and a key note speech by Pierre-Etienne Gautier, SNCF. The Railenergy intermediate conference brought together rail manufacturers, operators and infrastructure managers in order to discuss the project results achieved so far. Railenergy represents a milestone in rail energy efficiency technologies and management procedures of which the sector will in the future refer to before and after Railenergy.

The second day of the conference was opened by Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, General Director of UIC, who welcomed the participants by outlining the role of rail as a part of the solution to reduce the growing CO2-emissions from the transport sector. He explained how the rail sector is working to continuously improving its energy advantage and is ready to take the responsibility as the backbone of sustainable transport systems. Loubinoux’s welcome was followed by a keynote address from Pierre-Franck Chevet, General Manager - Energy and Climate from the French Ministry for Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Development, and Town and Country Planning - Regional Development outlining the transport policies and measures in the newly introduced French “Grenelle Environnement”.
The third and last day was dedicated to the second part of the 4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference and the final conference of the EU-funded TRAINER project. The TRAINER project focused on energy efficient driving trainings and procedures at five European railways.

Energy Efficiency Day No. 1 – Railenergy intermediate conference

During an intensive day the participants were taken through the different working packages and components of this ground breaking research project on how rail will continue to further improve its low carbon performance with the most efficient and best measures and technologies.

The day was divided into sessions on Energy Efficiency Management, Innovative Energy Efficiency Operation, Innovative Energy Efficiency Trackside, Energy Saving Onboard and Innovative Traction systems. To point out highlights among all the excellent presentations that took place during the day is difficult, but the first session was mentioned by many of the participants as especially interesting in relation to measuring performance and reporting on it. It was pointed out this is extremely important for the communication around the performance and the energy saving potential of the rail sector.
Enno Wiebe, UIC and Helene Koepf, UNIFE, led the day steadily and elegantly on behalf of the Railenergy consortium. The Railenergy ‘Inquisition’ at the end of the day made sure that the conference participants had followed what at times was a truly technical programme, and challenged two members of the audience to report on the highlights of the day and to give their recommendations for the next steps. Uwe Henning from UNIFE summarised the day with the three key words “economy, ecology and standards”, explaining that with all the great work presented the sector is prepared for new standards where both the ecology and economy would benefit strongly. As next steps Mr. Henning suggested that all the cooperation involved in Railenergy should continue also after the project and further on to include for example the European Rail Research Advisory Council (ERRAC). The other participant who was challenged by the Railenergy ‘Inquisition’, Ian Papworth, was also impressed by the content of the Railenergy Intermediate Conference mentioning especially the importance of the Knowledge bank for best practise, expertise and experiencing sharing and as next steps he was especially clear: “Implementation!’, and continued “the tools, technology and the expertise are there – now get on with it!”

Energy Efficiency Day No. 2’ – 4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference

The 4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference was hosted by SNCF and took place on the 24th and the 25th of September. The first day was divided into three main sessions on “Energy policies and communication”, ‘Metering, Management and Human Factor” and “Technology and Procurement”.

Henning Schwarz, UIC, guided the participants excellently through both days and started the 4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference by introducing Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of UIC, who gave the welcome speech, Pierre-Franck Chevet, General Manager - Energy and Climate from the French Ministry for Ecology, Energy, Sustainable Development, and Town and Country Planning - Regional Development, who gave the key note address to the participants. This was followed by the speech of Dominique Vastel, Energy Saving Program Manager of SNCF, who made the welcome speech on behalf of the host.

The main themes of the first session were policies and communication, the global climate change challenge and how to reduce the emissions from the transport sector. The speakers included Bernard Jamet, UNEP who outlined that main emission reductions can be achieved already by existing technologies with the three key words “Avoid, Shift and Clean”. François Cuenot, IEA, presented the new IEA publication “Transport Energy and CO2 – Moving towards Sustainability”. Libor Lochman, emphasised that not only policies are needed for society to benefit for the emissions reduction potential, but also economical measures as the market is distorted in strong favour of road transport. The external costs need to be included in order to move towards a fair level playing field for transport. Raimondo Orsini, Sustainable Development Foundation, presented the UIC Energy & CO2-database, its latest updates and the importance of getting the figures right for communication. The session was chaired by Wim Osterwijk, NS.

In the technical sessions of the afternoon, several case studies and examples of good practice from different aspects of the rail sector were presented. For the participants it was extremely encouraging and inspiring to share the level of expertise, experience and knowledge of the speakers. The presentations treated the main aspects of energy saving issues related to railways – from energy metering and billing, implementation of energy saving programs, design and procurement of energy efficient rolling stock.

Energy Efficiency Day No. 3 –
4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference (part II) and TRAINER final conference

The third day of the Energy Efficiency Days 2009 was dedicated to the final conference of the TRAINER project and the follow-up of the 4th UIC Energy Efficiency Conference. The opening of the day gave an overview of the EU-funded TRAINER project and its main results. This was elaborated in presentations of the Slovenian and the Slovakian Railways. The participants were given a sneak preview of the movie for training of train drivers in energy efficient driving styles. This movie is one of the main outputs of the TRAINER project and was well received by the audience. The movie is available in eight different languages at .

This session was followed by four workshops on “Ecodriving Training Programmes”, “Traction Energy Metering and Billing”, “Energy Efficient Non-Traction Operations” and “Energy Management for existing rolling stock” built on the UIC energy saving brochure “People, power and process”.

The Energy Efficiency Days 2009 Conference were concluded by Ian Papworth who emphasised the global importance of all the good work presented during the Energy Efficiency Days 2009 and reminded all participants to use this knowledge and expertise in order to implement it into company practice. He concluded with the sentence “Get on with it!”

The Energy Efficiency Days 2009 took place during the United Nation’s Global Climate Week which called for “unite efforts, whether individual or collective, calling for urgent action to combat climate change”. The long time systematic work from the rail sector to continuously improve its sustainability performance has been recognised by the UN. UIC members are invited to join the UN’s Climate Action Network.

UIC took this unique opportunity to launch the ‘Train to Copenhagen” campaign officially together with UN and the “Seal the Deal” campaign. Participants of the Energy
Efficiency Days 2009 were given the possibility to sign up for the Seal the Deal petition in order to encourage the world’s leaders to reach a global climate agreement in Copenhagen in December.

All presentation will be made available on the conference website soon at
For more information, please contact Henning Schwarz: or Enno Wiebe:

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