California Air Resources Board (CARB) has awarded a $22.6m grant to Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway Company under its Zero and Near Zero Emission Freight Facilities initiative.

San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District is a joint recipient of the grant, which will be used to pilot various emission reducing technologies in and around railyards.

BNSF will leverage its current investments in sustainable solutions such as idle control, electric wide-span cranes, electric hostlers, automated gates at its intermodal facilities, and Tier 4 locomotives.

BNSF Environmental vice-president John Lovenburg said: “BNSF is focused on continuing to reduce our environmental impact, and we’re committed to doing our part to test and prove the commercial viability of emerging technologies that reduce emissions.”

“BNSF is focused on continuing to reduce our environmental impact, and we’re committed to doing our part to test and prove the commercial viability of emerging technologies.”

For the project, BNSF will collaborate with GE Transportation and develop a battery-electric locomotive that will be paired with diesel locomotives to power a freight train connecting Stockton with Barstow, California.

GE Transportation will develop the battery-electric locomotive to test the technology’s operational efficiencies and growth potential in the freight rail industry.

This battery-electric locomotive will be designed to produce 2,400kWh of power and reduce a freight train’s total fuel consumption by a minimum of 10% to 15%.

As part of the clean technology project, two hybrid rubber-tire gantry cranes developed by Mi-Jack will be piloted. One crane will be positioned at BNSF’s Stockton Intermodal Facility, and the other at the San Bernardino Intermodal Facility.

Compared to the diesel cranes, the hybrid cranes reduce emissions by 70%.

In addition, a Taylor all-electric side loader will be piloted at BNSF’s San Bernardino Intermodal Facility.

BNSF will also team up with drayage truck provider SH&H to demonstrate a BYD all-electric drayage truck in San Bernardino.

All the equipment used in the project are expected to be built in 2019 and deployed in 2020.