Germany lags behind European neighbours in railway electrification
Clean Energy Wire
Germany lags far behind other European countries in the electrification of its railway network, according to railway lobby group Allianz pro Schiene. With only 61 percent of its railways electrified, Germany is behind eight other countries -- Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Sweden, Austria, Italy, Poland and Spain. Switzerland leads with 100 percent electrification, followed by Belgium with 86 percent. Germany is making little progress and is moving much slower than the EU average, Allianz pro Schiene states, pointing out that the country increased the proportion of tracks with power lines by just two percentage points between 2009 and 2019. The EU as a whole was twice as fast with a plus of four percentage points.
The next federal government must accelerate railway electrification and the phaseout of diesel, the lobby group adds. “Other countries are relying fully on climate-friendly e-mobility in rail transport,” said Allianz pro Schiene head Dirk Flege. “Germany dithers and hesitates. The future federal government must finally move from talking to action.” German railway company Deutsche Bahn announced earlier this year that it was aiming to become climate neutral a decade earlier than its previous 2050 target.