The Department for Transport (DfT) has announced the projects that will reduce the carbon footprint on the UK’s railways, as part of the government’s First of a Kind (FOAK) competition.
Five innovative schemes will receive a share of £1.75 million that will accelerate these carbon-cutting projects on the rail network.
It equates to approximately £350,000 for each project, to adapt them for the rail network.
The winning schemes were chosen through the second round of the DfT’s FOAK competition, which is focused on any innovative scheme that will accelerate the reduction in carbon footprint on Britain’s railways.
It is a vital component of the government’s Industrial Strategy, which will drive a cleaner and greener economy.
Run by Innovative UK, the FOAK competition was launched two years ago and, in this second round of funding, focused on two themes: decarbonising the railway, and improving passenger experience in stations.
Andrew Jones, commented: “We want a cleaner, greener rail network and transforming our trains will help make this a reality. The targets we set for 2040 are ambitious but are within our reach.
“It is encouraging to see the huge efforts already underway to make this happen.
“This funding will be vital in helping these fantastic projects adapt to the demands of rail and enable their potential roll-out, delivering a cleaner, healthier network for passengers.
“It also underlines the shared commitment of government and industry to ensuring we have a modern railway that protects our environment.”
Those projects that receive funding include one scheme that will use solar panels to directly power trains; and a system that will use hydrogen and oxygen to produce steam in order to power engines.
This announcement comes at a time when rail leaders have published the interim Rail Industry Decarbonisation Taskforce report, which addresses the challenge of cutting emissions and removing diesel-only trains by 2040.
It outlines the need for investment to fund alternatives to these trains, such as hydrogen and battery trains, which could be introduced to the Lakes Line in the early 2020s.