NS takes CEO for a spin as renewable traction power takes over

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As of January 1, all electric services run by Dutch rail operator NS will be powered by renewable wind energy.

To get the message across, the chief executive of NS, Roger van Boxtel, delivered an address in a video uploaded to YouTube just after Christmas – nothing unusual about that. He was strapped to a windmill blade throughout, however.

In the video, which has received almost 200,000 views, van Boxtel said a windmill turning for around an hour produces enough energy to power a train from from Utrecht to Groningen – a distance of almost 200 kilometres.

Power is supplied by Eneco as part of a 10-year agreement with NS, which has seen new wind farms built to meet the railway’s demand for energy, said van Boxtel.

On January 1, NS also signed a six-year contract with Essent to supply biogas energy to heat the operator’s stations, waiting rooms and office buildings. NS aims to significantly increase its ‘green gas’ consumption by 2020.

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