Freight Rail Cuts Congestion, Drives Green Economy in Bay State

With freight shipments increasing and highway congestion on the rise, rail offers Massachusetts a way to tackle growing demand without tying commuters up in ever worsening traffic. Because freight rail moves cargo economically while using less fuel and emitting fewer pollutants than trucks, companies and communities throughout the Commonwealth benefit from rail in more ways than one.

Massachusetts's 14 freight railroads operate over 1,000 miles of track and employ 604 in The Bay State.* It would have taken approximately 852,000 additional truckloads to move the 15.3 million tons of freight that moved by rail in Massachusetts in 2019. Moving freight by rail prevented 859,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent of taking 168,000 cars off the road or planting 13 million trees. Intermodal and waste and scrap make up the majority of freight rail shipments beginning in Massachusetts. Intermodal shipments are the largest rail imports to the commonwealth.

*2019 data

Rail at Work

Massachusetts

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Featured Rail Advocates

Massachusetts
Timothy Murray
Timothy Murray
President and CEO, Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Frank Smizik
Frank Smizik
Massachusetts State Representative

Featured Rail Supply Companies

Massachusetts

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NRCMA
HDR
Alstom
RailWorks Corporation
L.B. Foster Company

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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

Massachusetts
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.