We appreciate your taking the time to emphasize several of the points emphasized in your story and giving us the opportunity to comment further.
Without commenting specifically on the findings of the California Air Resources Board studies, we would note that those studies are very fact specific, particularly with regard to the size and scope of the rail and other operations at the specific facilities and with regard to meteorological conditions of the region. It is difficult at best to make any assumptions, extrapolations and findings about particular facilities that don’t reflect the changes in those factors.
We believe that the rail industry and CSX have made significant efforts to be responsible environmental stewards while maintaining the ability to contribute to the region’s economy and employment base. For example, CSX was the first railroad and the first transportation company to join the [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency] Climate Leaders. CSX is also the first transportation company to agree to commit to decrease CO2 emissions. (CSX is committed to reducing CO2 emissions by 8 percent by 2011.) Since 1980, CSX has improved locomotive fuel efficiency by 80 percent; since 2000, CSX has spent more than $1 billion to upgrade its locomotive fleet, retrofitting existing locomotives and introducing new Tier I and Tier II clean air locomotives which meet the latest EPA requirements. The upgraded locomotives are expected to reduce emissions and lower fuel consumption by nearly 10 million gallons per year. You referenced anti-idling technology: as of now, more than 70 percent of CSX’s locomotive fleet is equipped with this technology, and we are working toward 100 percent. CSX is also working to utilize ultra-low sulfur fuel as it becomes available and CSX also is prepared to meet the EPA guidelines as they take affect.
Thank you again for the opportunity to weigh in one more time on this story.