On 5 June every year, the railways observe World Environment Day, which was established by the UN in 1972.
Environmental protection centres, including a number of “eco-labs”, operate across the 16 companies which make up the Russian railways. Their main task is to implement a common policy of eco-friendliness within RZD, and to verify that all the company’s subsidiaries comply with environmental standards and regulations.
The eco-labs, whose expertise enables the various companies within the railways to quantify the eco-efficiency of infrastructure and facilities ahead of time and adopt effective measures to reduce environmental damage in the event of accidents, are the subject of particular attention.
In 2013, RZD’s investment in environmental measures as a share of total investment projects amounted to 77 53 000 Euros, with current expenditure on environmental protection standing at 55 368 000 Euros.
Over the period 2003-2013, the measures taken each year to upgrade to more eco-friendly technical systems, introduce innovative equipment and technology, and to run investment projects for environmental protection, have cut:
- harmful particles in the atmosphere (stationary sources) by a magnitude of 2.2;
- waste water released into the water table by a magnitude of 3;
- water consumption for technical purposes by a magnitude of 1.8;
- the number of rail lines laid on wooden sleepers by a magnitude of 2.2.
In 2013, the company’s efforts to protect the environment were lauded by the federal executive and by various public bodies, and the Russian railways won five prestigious awards and certificates in domestic and international competitions for environmental protection.
In order to roll out its environmental strategy, RZD has adopted an Environment Strategy for the period up to 2015 and looking ahead to 2030. The goals of this strategy are to reduce all forms of environmental pollution as a result of the company’s activities by a magnitude of 2 by 2030, with priority accorded to “green technologies”.