CN acquires more energy-efficient intermodal equipment to improve service, reduce emissions

Oct 18, 2011, 10:40 ET from CN

TORONTO, Oct. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire/ - CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI) announced today the purchase of 200 more efficient EcoTherm containers to increase customer efficiency and help reduce energy consumption in its fast-growing temperature-sensitive intermodal markets. Products such as food, beverages, paints and pharmaceuticals require protection against low temperatures. With this container acquisition, CN's EcoTherm fleet stands at almost 500 units, the largest in North America.

CN also announced the purchase of 25 EcoRide chassis. They weigh 15 per cent less than conventional chassis and are equipped with aerodynamic features such as side skirts and low-rolling resistance tires. Containers delivered on EcoRide chassis consume eight to 11 per cent less fuel than containers delivered on traditional chassis.

Jean-Jacques Ruest, CN executive vice-president and chief marketing officer, said: "EcoTherm and EcoRide are innovative technological advances that help CN reduce the energy intensity of its customers' supply chains and position us to grow our business."

The super-insulated 40-foot EcoTherm container is an economical, green alternative to the 53-foot heated container. Food and beverage customers can load the same volume of product in the 40-foot insulated container without the need for the blocking and bracing required in a 53-foot container.

EcoTherm has more insulation than a conventional diesel engine-powered "heater" container, enabling it to hold its interior temperature more effectively. This allows EcoTherm to retain the proper temperature for sensitive goods throughout a rail trip as long as 10 days with no need for an engine to burn fuel en route.

Chantal Gariépy, national transport manager for Molson Coors Canada, the Canadian division of Molson Coors Brewing Company, a global brewer with operations in Canada, the U.S., the U.K. and Asia, said: "For many years, CN has played a key role in helping Molson Coors move its beer from coast to coast. Molson Coors has always been interested in reducing its environmental footprint, and CN is a great partner that offers an environmentally efficient freight solution.

"Molson Coors also appreciates CN equipment design that is truly adapted to the rugged Canadian climate. The CN super-insulated containers have been part of the Molson Coors' winter freight program for the last two years and have really made a difference in efficiency, freezing protection and loading capabilities."

CN leads the North American rail industry in fuel efficiency, consuming approximately 10 per cent less fuel per gross-ton-mile overall than the industry average. CN's lower fuel consumption results in fewer greenhouse gas emissions and the lowest fuel surcharge in the industry.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain information included in this news release are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and under Canadian securities laws. CN cautions that, by their nature, these forward-looking statements involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. The Company cautions that its assumptions may not materialize and that current economic conditions render such assumptions, although reasonable at the time they were made, subject to greater uncertainty. Such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results or performance of the Company or the rail industry to be materially different from the outlook or any future results or performance implied by such statements.

Important risk factors that could affect the forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the effects of general economic and business conditions, industry competition, inflation, currency and interest rate fluctuations, changes in fuel prices, legislative and/or regulatory developments, compliance with environmental laws and regulations, actions by regulators, various events which could disrupt operations, including natural events such as severe weather, droughts, floods and earthquakes, labor negotiations and disruptions, environmental claims, uncertainties of investigations, proceedings or other types of claims and litigation, risks and liabilities arising from derailments, and other risks detailed from time to time in reports filed by CN with securities regulators in Canada and the United States. Reference should be made to "Management's Discussion and Analysis" in CN's annual and interim reports, Annual Information Form and Form 40-F filed with Canadian and U.S. securities regulators, available on CN's website, for a summary of major risks.

CN assumes no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect future events, changes in circumstances, or changes in beliefs, unless required by applicable Canadian securities laws. In the event CN does update any forward-looking statement, no inference should be made that CN will make additional updates with respect to that statement, related maters, or any other forward-looking statement.

CN - Canadian National Railway Company and its operating railway subsidiaries - spans Canada and mid-America, from the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to the Gulf of Mexico, serving the ports of Vancouver, Prince Rupert, B.C., Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile, Ala., and the key metropolitan areas of Toronto, Buffalo, Chicago, Detroit, Duluth, Minn./Superior, Wis., Green Bay, Wis., Minneapolis/St. Paul, Memphis, St. Louis, and Jackson, Miss., with connections to all points in North America. For more information on CN, visit the company's website at www.cn.ca.

SOURCE CN