Minister to launch rail freight strategy in Ballina

IARNRÓD Éireann will be joined by Minister of State at the Department of Transport with Special Responsibility for International Transport and Logistics, Hildegarde Naughton, in Ballina this Wednesday to launch the company’s new national Rail Freight 2040 Strategy.

Ballina is one of the rail network's most important hubs currently, with container freight services operating to Dublin Port (in partnership with IWT) and Waterford Port (in partnership with XPO), and pulpwood transported to Waterford Port for Coillte.

The new strategy will outline strategic initiatives under five pillars which are targeted to increase rail freight operations five-fold.

The strategy is aligned with Climate Action Plan goals to decarbonise transport, and is being launched during the European Commission's European Year of Rail 2021, which targets growth in rail freight across the EU.

The new strategy's aims include:

A five-fold increase in the number of rail freight services, to include over 100 new weekly services across the rail network.

A resulting reduction of 25,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually, with rail freight emissions per unit as little as 16% of HGV emissions.

Avoiding the requirement for 140,000 HGV journeys on our roads annually.