CN has purchased 200 efficient EcoTherm containers to increase customer efficiency and help reduce energy consumption in its temperature-sensitive intermodal markets.

Products such as food, beverages, paints and pharmaceuticals require protection against low temperatures. With this container acquisition, CN says its EcoTherm fleet stands at almost 500 units -- the largest in North America.

CN has also purchased 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 8% to 11% less fuel than containers delivered on traditional chassis.

Jean-Jacques Ruest, CN executive vice-president and chief marketing officer, says, "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-ft insulated container without the need for the blocking and bracing required in a 53-ft 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 says, "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 claims to lead the North American rail industry in fuel efficiency, consuming approximately 10% less fuel per gross-ton-mile overall than the industry average, the company says. CN's lower fuel consumption results in fewer greenhouse gas emissions and the lowest fuel surcharge in the industry.

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