Norfolk Southern Corp., Norfolk, Va., released its 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Report, detailing achievements that include record locomotive fuel efficiency and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.

“Our aim is to provide stakeholders a more complete picture of our activities to support the communities we serve and the role that philanthropy plays in the railroad’s sustainability efforts,” says Jim Squires, chief executive officer.

In 2017, Norfolk Southern and its foundation contributed more than $10 million to non-profits across the railroad’s system, from health and human service organizations to cultural, educational, business and environmental groups.

Among achievements, in 2017, Norfolk Southern improved locomotive fuel efficiency by 5% vs. 2016, conserving 23 million gallons of diesel fuel and avoiding more than 233,750 metric tons of GHG emissions. The railroad has reduced its GHG emissions intensity by 15% since 2010 and lowered absolute GHG emissions for three consecutive years, delivering carbon- and cost-efficient service.

“As a freight rail transportation company, Norfolk Southern has a unique opportunity to help businesses both grow and achieve their sustainability goals, such as reducing their supply chain carbon footprint,” says Squires.

In other achievements detailed in the report, in 2017, Norfolk Southern:

  • Reduced electricity use as measured in kilowatt hours by 4% and reduced overall energy costs by nearly 3%.
  • Trained more than 8,100 emergency responders on how to prepare for and safely respond to potential transportation incidents involving hazardous materials.
  • Received the American Chemical Council’s Responsible Care Partner of the Year Award for exemplary performance and safety record in the transport of chemical products during 2017.
  • Rolled out its “Tell Me” safety campaign, focused on peer-to-peer safety communications and the company’s goal to achieve zero accidents and injuries.
  • Held its first “Inspire! Summit,” a 2-day employee workshop to promote diversity and inclusion at the company.  

“Norfolk Southern is proud of the progress we have made on our journey to be the industry leader in corporate social responsibility,” Squires says. “Every day, we aspire to industry-best performance in safety, in service and in stewardship.”