Q&A with Lynden Tennison, Chief Strategy Officer, Union Pacific With 26 years in the industry under his belt, Union Pacific’s Lynden Tennison has had a front row seat to the U.S. freight rail industry’s technological evolution. He served as Union Pacific’s Chief Information Officer for 13 years and most recently was promoted to Chief Strategy Officer. “It’s like night and day,” he says. “Back then it was traditional big iron mainframes. Today, we look a whole
Freight Rail’s Private Investments: Billions of Dollars Annually The U.S. freight rail network moves the raw goods and finished products that fuel the American economy, from the electricity powering businesses to the consumer goods filling shopping carts. This critical, efficient and cost-effective network is the best in the world thanks to railroads’ billions of dollars in annual investments. The U.S. Department of Transportation expects total freight demand to grow 41% from 2015 to 2040, which
Freight Rail Policy Stance: Freight railroads support a continuation of existing balanced regulatory policies. Why This Matters: The current regulatory framework protects rail customers against unreasonable railroad actions while allowing railroads to earn enough to make massive investments into their private 140,000-mile network. These investments ensure freight rail remains America’s critical connector. America’s freight railroads demonstrate that market-based solutions can help build a successful industry that drives economic prosperity from coast-to-coast. A broad and bipartisan
Environmental Benefits of Moving Freight by Rail Railroads are the most environmentally sound way to move freight over land. On average, trains are four times more fuel efficient than trucks. They also reduce highway gridlock, lower greenhouse gas emissions, and reduce emissions of particulate matter and nitrogen oxides. Through the use of greener technologies and more efficient operating practices, our nation’s privately owned freight railroads are committed to even greater environmental excellence in the years
How Intermodal Reinvented Freight Rail After the nation’s first railroad was chartered in 1827, the freight rail industry quickly became the preferred heavy hauler. From grain to coal to steel — freight rail moved the goods needed to power America’s Industrial Revolution. However, by the 1970s, heavy-handed regulation had pushed the industry toward collapse, making it ill-prepared to meet the challenges of a burgeoning global economy. Things began to turn around, however, beginning in 1980.
The industry attracts employees from a wide range of backgrounds —from high school graduates to those holding graduate degrees — to help safely transport the raw materials, products and finished goods that sustain the nation’s economy and people.
Railroads provide the opportunity to build lifelong careers in fields such as engineering and dispatching, in law enforcement, information technology and industrial development. And with a strong track record of hiring America’s veterans, rail companies are military-friendly employers.
Because of high wages and benefits, technical training and professional growth opportunities, freight rail employees often stay in the industry for their entire careers. Many have family railroad legacies that stretch back generations.
Date: 2/22/2018 In today’s interconnected world, putting “America First” means embracing global trade. The data are clear: Trade supports 40 million quality American jobs. One in four U.S. manufacturing jobs depends on exporting goods. And trade is now equivalent to roughly 27% of the nation’s GDP. American consumers have benefited with access to cheaper goods, too. Perhaps nothing exemplifies the benefits that come from trade as much as the free flow of goods between the
Equitable Automation Policy Will Unleash the Future of Transportation Government policy needs to encourage innovation across all modes of transportation. That’s the message the private freight rail industry delivered to the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) this week as it works to develop guidance and principles for the deployment of autonomous-vehicle technology on our nation’s highways. Technology, AAR noted in its filing, has the potential to create breakthrough gains in safety performance, just as it does for other transportation
Each day, nearly 600 freight railroad companies use a shared fleet of 1.6 million freight cars to move goods for thousands of customers spread across North America’s vast rail network.
Ensuring that operations run safely and efficiently allows railroads to maintain their competitive edge. By applying advanced software and technologies to operations, railroads move freight more efficiently and cost-effectively than ever before. Since 1980, rail traffic density increased approximately 300% with no significant increase in the size of the railroad network, locomotive productivity rose 93% and average freight carried per train rose 63%.
Improving the rail industry’s operational efficiency produces dividends for rail shippers too. Efficiency and productivity improvements help railroads keep prices low. In fact, rail shippers today can move roughly twice the amount of freight for nearly the same price paid in 1980, giving them an edge in an increasingly globalized economy.
By linking businesses to each other here and abroad, freight railroads have played a crucial role in America’s economic development for more than 185 years. American life is driven by employment and consumption, which is made possible by domestic and international trade. This trade, which happens across North America, depends on manufacturing and creating goods and services, transporting them to market and then selling them via various retail means — in person or electronically. International