Our strategy Strong Rail
A strong rail system in Germany is our inner ambition. It helps our country to overcome existential challenges:
- For the Climate. No other motorized transport today is as climate-friendly as rail. In addition, no other means of transport is as electric as rail, which holds the largest market share of e-mobility in Germany. No other mass transport can achieve a 100% share of renewable energies as quickly. A strong rail system is therefore an essential prerequisite for fulfilling the Federal Government’s and the EU’s climate targets, because a reduction in emissions in the transport sector cannot be achieved without a massive shift in the mode of transport towards climate-friendly rail transport. Strong Rail is a crucial beacon of hope for our climate. In concrete terms, a strong rail system means a reduction of the CO₂ total emissions by up to 10.5 million tons per year, which is equivalent to the annual CO₂ footprint of one million people.
- For People. By 2050, almost 85% of the population of Germany will probably live in metropolitan areas. This has an important consequence. Increasing passenger and freight transport is already presenting our cities and metropolitan areas with logistical, social and environmental challenges. The situation is different in many rural areas. Here, one of the central challenges is preserving individual mobility. In the future, a strong rail system can continue to enable vibrant, urban coexistence and the accessibility of rural regions, because it will enable real freedom of movement and allow travel time to be used in a variety of ways, without wasting valuable hours in our days. Specifically, this means double the number of passengers in rail passenger transport, five million fewer car journeys and 14,000 fewer plane journeys in Germany per day.
- For the Economy. The demand for freight transport is expected to continue to grow consistently. At the same time, commutes from the metropolitan areas and the increasing flexibility in terms of workplaces and working hours will lead to higher demands for work-related mobility. With a strong rail system, this rising volume of traffic can be overcome and environmentally friendly, economic growth is possible. It is therefore a crucial competitive factor for Germany’s future economic success and will secure Germany’s position as a leading export nation. With a strong rail system, we sharpen our competitive edge with the most modern transport logistics and develop decisive technological stimuli for the future. In concrete terms, this means a growth in the modal share of rail freight transport from 18% to 25%. This corresponds to 13 million fewer truck journeys per year on German roads.
- For Europe. Germany has a special responsibility for the future of Europe. As well as being the most populous country, it is also the geographic and economic heart of the continent. This role means Germany must be the pioneer and set the precedent for advancing European objectives. Climate protection, jobs, economic growth, social prosperity: much depends on the transport routes remaining future-proof. Strong Rail is the necessary link between East and West, and North and South. In this context, it is not only an important instrument for cultural cooperation between the individual countries, but also a crucial factor in jointly achieving the set objectives. Specifically, this means working together to realize a European network.