Freight Rail a Key to California’s Green Economy

Freight rail provides the seamless connections that keep California’s economy on track, from its 11 ports and Mexican border trade, to Inland Empire manufacturers and distribution centers, to its many farms and wineries. Rail is also leading the way to a greener future with its scale and efficiency: a single train can move a ton of freight nearly 500 miles on a single gallon of fuel and carry the load of several hundred trucks.

California's 27 freight railroads operate over 4,971 miles of track and employ 8,270 in The Golden State.* It would have taken approximately 9.3 million additional truckloads to move the 167.4 million tons of freight that moved by rail in California in 2019. Moving freight by rail prevented 16.6 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent of taking 3.25 million cars off the road or planting 251.5 million trees. Intermodal shipments, mostly arriving through California's world-class ports, make up the majority of freight rail shipments beginning in California. Intermodal shipments and farm products are the largest rail imports to the state.

*2019 data

Rail at Work

California

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Featured Rail Advocates

California
Randy Gordon
Randy Gordon
President & CEO, Long Beach Area Chamber of Commerce
Gurbax Sahota
Gurbax Sahota
President & CEO, California Association for Local Economic Development; Executive Director, California Academy for Economic Development
Paul Granillo
Paul Granillo
President & CEO, Inland Empire Economic Partnership

Featured Rail Supply Companies

California

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Rail Management Services
Professional Transportation, Inc.
NRCMA
HDR
Alstom
IAT International, Inc.
The Okonite Company
Wabtec Corporation
TTX Company
RailWorks Corporation
Progress Rail Services
L.B. Foster Company
Hulcher Services Inc.
Ames Construction

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44 percent
decrease

in rail rates on average from 1981 to today.


That means the average rail customer today can ship significantly more freight for about the same price they paid 40 years ago. 

State Director

California
Nate Kaplan

Nate Kaplan

State Director

Nate Kaplan has been an active player on the political scene from coast to coast, with a background in local, state and federal elections.