Energy transport should be given priority in rail transport

Freight train with tank wagons
Image: dpa

Trains transporting oil, gas, coal and transformers are to be given temporary priority in rail traffic. Two ministries want to contribute to securing the energy supply with a new regulation.

ZIn order to secure the energy supply in Germany, the transport of mineral oil, gas, coal and transformers should temporarily be given priority in rail transport. This is provided for by a legal ordinance drawn up by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Federal Ministry of Transport. “The aim is to ensure the operation of power plants, refineries, power grids and other vital operations,” says a paper from both ministries that is available to the German Press Agency in Berlin.

Interventions in rail traffic should be kept as low as possible, cancellations or delays in passenger traffic should be avoided as far as possible. The ordinance, which is now being coordinated within the federal government, should therefore be limited to six months.

The illegal war of aggression by Russia on Ukraine triggered an energy crisis, and supply chains and routes would be changed accordingly, the paper continues. Energy sources such as steam coal and mineral oil would have to be used more temporarily. “That requires extremely demanding logistics.”

The industry is facing a huge challenge, write the two ministries. The paper refers to the low water levels in the rivers and the resulting reduced transport capacities of inland waterways, heavy traffic on rail corridors and a sharp increase in construction activity in the rail network as well as the prospective embargo-related phasing out of crude oil supplies from the Druzhba pipeline.

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