Our climate target: to halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030
Since the previous year, we have been focusing on our new climate target. By the year 2030, we will at least halve specific greenhouse gas emissions – that is emissions related to volume sold – worldwide compared to 2006. Across the entire transport sector in Germany, a shift in the mode of transport to rail by 2030 can save up to 10.5 million tons CO₂ per year.
With an increase of one million passengers using long-distance rail passenger transport, over 40,000 t of CO₂ can be saved per year compared to car use. This corresponds to the amount of CO₂ that about 3,200 hectares of mixed forest in Germany, roughly the area of the Jasmund National Park on Rügen or about 4,500 football fields, can convert in a year. A total of 160 million tons of CO₂ were generated in the year 2014 in the transport sector in Germany.
Simultaneously, international logistics provider DB Schenker has undertaken to grow in a climate-neutral manner. This means that we will keep the greenhouse gas emissions of our global logistics transport outside of Germany constant, despite the expected further increase in transport volume in the coming decade. Compared to 2006, DB Schenker intends to reduce specific greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40%.
In order to be climate-neutral overall by 2050, we are gradually increasing the share of renewable energies in the DB traction current mix until it reaches 100% by 2038, increasing the efficiency of our transport and working on more sustainable transport solutions.
Spezific greenhouse gas emissions in comparison to 2006 (%)
Since the previous year, in addition to reducing the specific greenhouse gas emissions of the carriers, we have also included our stationary facilities in our climate target. We continued to reduce specific greenhouse gas emissions compared to 2006 in line with our targets. The development is above our forecast from the 2018 Integrated Report.
Spezific CO₂e emissions from journeys and transports
Regional rail passenger transport (g/pkm)
thereof in Germany
Long-distance rail passenger transport (g/pkm) 1)
Bus transport (g/pkm)
thereof in Germany
Rail freight transport (g/pkm)
Road freight transport (g/tkm)
Air freight (g/tkm)
Ocean freight (g/tkm)
Well-to-wheel (WTW); scope 1 – 3; without pre- and onward carriage; rail transport companies are calculated with their own energy mix and/or European country mixes.
1) Previous year’s figures adjusted.
The improvement compared with the previous year can be attributed in particular to the further increase in the share of renewable energies in the traction current mix as well as energy efficiency gains on the rails and in ocean freight.
Share of renewable energies in the DB traction current mix
Data for 2019 are based on information and estimates available as of February 2020.
1) Including additionally procured electricity for all green offerings of DB Group with 100% eco-power (e.g., S-Bahn (metro) Hamburg or DBeco plus) and taking into account a forecast based upon the Renewable Energy Sources Act subsidy.
From January 1, 2018, all passengers traveling on our long-distance trains across Germany are using 100% Eco-Power NO. 1. Since the beginning of 2018, the Berlin S-Bahn (metro) has been climate-neutral and contributes to the high share of eco-power in the DB traction current mix. Since 2010, the Hamburg S-Bahn (metro) has been fully powered by eco-power. In rail freight transport, DB eco plus offers our customers the opportunity of climate neutral transports driven by 100% eco-power. The development corresponds to our forecast from the 2018 Integrated Report.
In the year under review, to expand the supply of our rail transport with eco-power, we conducted an EU-wide tender for the procurement of 500 gigawatt hours (GWh) of eco-power, and the first contract was concluded for the use of electricity from an offshore wind farm.
Specificprimary energy consumption by DB Group journeys and transports
Regional rail passenger transport (MJ/pkm)
thereof in Germany
Long-distance rail passenger transport (MJ/pkm)
Bus transport (MJ/pkm)
thereof in Germany
Rail freight transport (MJ/tkm)
Road freight transport (MJ/tkm)
Air freight (MJ/tkm)
Ocean freight (MJ/tkm)
Well-to-wheel (WTW); scope 1 – 3; without pre- and onward carriage.
With the cross-fleet increase in energy efficiency and the increase in the share of renewable energies, specificprimary energy consumption in rail passenger transport in Germany and in ocean freight has continued to decrease. By using primary energy as a reference, we also take into account the processes required for providing the energy, such as extraction, processing and the transport of fuels or the generation of electricity.
The main levers for reducing our energy consumption are equipping our freight train locomotives with driving assistance systems, as well as modernizing our electric vehicle fleets with new series vehicles with higher energy efficiency (including multi-system locomotives of the 193 series) or the ability to convert kinetic energy into electricity during braking.
With the recovery of energy from BRAKING PROCESSES NO. 19, our modern electric locomotives and multiple units make another important contribution to increasing energy efficiency. In the year under review, the recovery rate increased to 16% (previous year: 15%). Currently, the fleet vehicles that are able to “recycle” electricity is growing, for example, with the ICE 4 in passenger transport or the 185 series in freight transport.
In the year under review, we also drove forward the continuous replacement of old, decentralized transformers with modern electronic converters, to increase energy efficiency in the generation of traction current.
Stationary energy requirements in stations, facilities and buildings
Absolute primary energy consumption of DB Group
Rail network operation
Maintenance of rolling stock (depots)
The about 5,400 stations, and our maintenance depots and buildings in Germany, as well as over 2,000 sites worldwide operated by DB Schenker, account for about 7% of DB Groupʼs total primary energy requirements. To identify potential savings and measure energy consumption over the long term, energy audits were carried out in about 700 subsidiaries in previous years in order to implement the EU Energy Efficiency Directive. DB Energie GmbH, DB Regio AG, S-Bahn Berlin GmbH and S-Bahn Hamburg GmbH, DB Fernverkehr AG and DB Station&Service AG have each had an ENERGY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (ENMS) NO. 78 in accordance with ISO 50001 since 2016. This was partly responsible for the further fall in stationary energy consumption compared to the previous year. At DB Netze Stations, we managed to lower the absolute primary energy consumption by about 22% in comparison to 2010 by the end of the year under review.
Eco-power in 33 Stations
Since January 1, 2019, the 15 largest stations in Germany have been supplied with 100% Eco-System NO. 147 These include six stations in Berlin, the main stations of Hamburg, Hanover, Düsseldorf, Cologne, Frankfurt am Main, Nuremberg and Stuttgart, and two stations in Munich. The use of renewable energies is supported by the supply of these stations. By the end of 2019, further stations are being added as part of Smart Cities and future stations projects. In total, about 76 GWh are replaced by green electricity. This corresponds to about 23% of the annual total electricity
consumed by all stations in Germany.