Locomotive repower gets new Cat engines

Progress Rail, Pacific Harbor Line Sign agreement for lower emissions powerplants.

Progress Rail Services Corp. (Progress Rail), a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Inc., and Pacific Harbor Line, Inc. (PHL) announced that the parties have entered into a contract for Progress Rail to repower 16 Tier 2 locomotives with newer, lower emissions Tier 3 Cat engines for operation in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The adjoining ports are the busiest container ports in the United States and the eighth busiest container ports in the world.

The Cat 3512C HD engines will be equipped with diesel particulate filters (DPFs). PHL Managing Director Andrew Fox says, "This will be the cleanest locomotive fleet in North America. Particulate matter (PM) will be reduced by more than 90% from the current engines, which were already among the cleanest in the country."

When completed, Pacific Harbor Line's entire fleet of 22 locomotives will meet or exceed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Tier 3 standards, according to Fox.

The locomotives will be repowered in Progress Rail Services' Tacoma, Wash., facility during 2011 and will enter service once certified by the EPA.

The project, totaling approximately $12 million, will be funded in large part by a grant from the Carl Moyer Program administered by the South Coast Air Quality Management District and California Air Resources Board, and with funds from Pacific Harbor Line.

The ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach facilitated this project by entering into agreements with PHL, making it possible for the railroad to commit to long-term use of Progress Rail's sustainable locomotives as a part of the ports' Clean Air Action Plan.

"We are pleased to work with Progress Rail Services and Caterpillar in our efforts to lower locomotive emissions in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area," says Michael Stolzman, president of PHL. "These locomotives will provide reliable and cleaner performance for many years--important criteria for the environment and operation of the ports, which moves 42% of all U.S. imported goods."

"Being selected by PHL, which has been a leader in many ways, including being named Short Line of the Year by Railway Age in 2009, is truly an honor. It was the first railroad in the country to field an all Tier 2 and Tier 3 fleet in 2008," says Billy Ainsworth, president and CEO of Progress Rail. "We are pleased that PHL has selected Progress Rail and low-emission Cat engines as the solution that creates the most value and takes PHL to the next level. Progress Rail, combined with its subsidiary Electro-Motive Diesel, offers locomotive customers the most diverse range of engine solutions for their locomotive needs."

"The Port of Long Beach commends Pacific Harbor Line's leadership and innovation in improving air quality in Southern California. By this time, it should be no surprise that PHL has stepped up to the plate to help us continue our successful mission to create jobs and clean up the air," says Nick Sramek, president of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners. "Industry partners like Pacific Harbor Line really put the 'action' in the Clean Air Action Plan."

"As we build on the significant successes of the Clean Air Action Plan, Pacific Harbor Line's repowered locomotives will help us reach the new, even more aggressive goals we are setting in the Clean Air Action Plan update," says Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Geraldine Knatz. "It's commitments like this, by industry partners like PHL, that help us provide unparalleled logistics, cleaner air for our communities, and more sustainable operations over the long run."

Progress Rail Services, a wholly owned subsidiary of Caterpillar Inc., is a leading supplier of remanufactured locomotive and railcar products and services to the railroad industry, operating one of the most extensive rail service and supply networks in North America. We serve our customers through a network of more than 130 locations across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Italy, Germany and the United Kingdom, with more than 4,300 employees. Progress Rail Services is headquartered in Albertville, AL.