External Commitments


CDP is an international organization that facilitates corporate management and reporting of greenhouse gas emissions and climate-related risks and opportunities. Company disclosures to CDP are based on completeness and data quality, on a 100-point scale. High scores indicate that a company provided robust climate data and conveyed a strong understanding of corporate climate-related issues. The performance band scores range from A to E (A being best). CDP defines the performance band as a measure of a company’s positive actions to promote climate change mitigation, adaptation and transparency.

Amtrak began reporting to CDP in 2013. These are the scores for each year we have reported:

2013: 85B

2014: 96B

2015: 99B

The Amtrak submittals can be found at www.cdp.net.

International Union of Railways (UIC) Railway Climate Responsibility Pledge

In December 2015, parties at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) reached a landmark agreement, charting a fundamentally new course in the two-decade-old global climate effort. The new treaty ends the strict differentiation between developed and developing countries that characterized earlier efforts, replacing it with a common framework that commits all countries to put forward their best efforts and to strengthen them in the years ahead. The treaty includes, for the first time, requirements that all parties report regularly on their emissions and implementation efforts, and undergo international review. This agreement was the key outcome of the conference, known as the 21st session of the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties, or COP 21. This result presents the rail sector with an opportunity to highlight rail as an energy efficient mode of transportation and demonstrate the importance of investing in rail.

To show our commitment to and support of the COP 21 outcome and treaty, Amtrak recently signed the UIC Railway Climate Responsibility Pledge. In signing the pledge, Amtrak committed to reduce energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, stimulate modal shift to rail in national and international markets, actively communicate climate-friendly initiatives and publicly report data on energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.

American Public Transportation Association (APTA) Sustainability Commitment

Amtrak signed onto the APTA Sustainability Commitment in 2009 as one of the founding signatories. The APTA Commitment required a baseline inventory of multiple sustainability parameters including GHG emissions, water and energy usage, waste and recycling, and air emissions of criteria pollutants. In 2013, Amtrak achieved the Bronze level of the APTA Commitment by completing a sustainability inventory, implementing green initiatives (such as installing energy efficient lighting) and setting goals for reducing fuel use in locomotives and electricity at facilities.

Chicago Climate Exchange

Amtrak was a charter member of the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX), a carbon exchange that required an aggressive commitment to reduce greenhouse gases. As a member of CCX, Amtrak committed to reduce emissions by 6% between 2003 and 2010. Amtrak exceeded this goal through various fuel-conservation initiatives that continue today, including anti-idling practices, installation of automatic start/stop devices in locomotives, locomotive upgrades, and improved training for locomotive engineers.