For more than a century, GE Transportation has been an industry leader that builds things that move the world. We have developed breakthrough technologies that today span the rail, mining, marine, drilling and energy-storage industries. These world-class products include fuel-efficient and emissions-friendly freight and passenger locomotives; diesel engines for rail, marine and stationary-power applications; and signaling and software solutions. We also build drive systems for mining trucks and offer additional products, services and solutions in power, water and productivity for the mining industry.
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GE Transportation employees—numbering approximately 12,000 around the world—are committed to their individual communities, recognizing the importance of investing time and talent to address challenges that range from education and community development to health and environmental concerns. In a 2010 economic impact study conducted by Tripp Umbach, employees from GE Transportation’s Global Locomotive headquarters, in Erie, Pa., were estimated to have given more than $19.6 million in financial contributions and volunteer time.
Since 2007, the GE Foundation has supported the City of Erie School District with a $15 million grant that supports efforts to improve student scores and learning in math and science, close achievement gaps and encourage more students to attend college. The grant helped develop a rigorous, system-wide math and science curriculum in Erie schools based on a model refined with the help of various educational experts.
The result? In 2011, the district’s 17 elementary and middle schools improved their test scores on the math portion of the Pennsylvania State System of Assessment test.
In 2012, the GE Foundation continued its commitment to the City of Erie School District, awarding it a four-year, $8.6 million grant intended to implement the Common Core State Standards by providing financial support for the hiring of 10 full-time instructors. A portion of the grant will maintain the district’s K–8 science programs, and the grant’s reach will now extend to improve students’ language-arts skills and performance in high school. Complementing this financial support, volunteers from GE Transportation, working alongside parents and community members, help equip Erie students with the knowledge and skills needed to succeed in school and effectively transition to productive careers.
In addition, GE Transportation has actively supported the annual FIRST Robotics Competition (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) for more than a decade. This worldwide competition provides a real-world challenge that culminates in high-energy competitions. In 2011, two dozen GE Transportation employees joined 100 students to design, assemble and program five robots. GE Transportation’s teams won a total of five trophies, including the Chairman’s Award.
Other GE Transportation community efforts include partnering with customer CSX in Cumberland, Md., to host the Battie Mixon Fishing Rodeo, which encourages children’s participation in healthy outdoor activities. In Kansas City, Mo., GE Transportation volunteers joined colleagues from GE Energy, GE Capital and GE Corporate to work at Harvesters Community Food Network, where volunteers repackaged produce and processed 36,493 pounds of food that would provide 28,071 meals to that community.
Finally, as part of a GE Works in the Community day in Erie, employees removed invasive plants that threaten biodiversity at Presque Isle State Park, and worked on trails and gardens at Asbury Woods, a local nature center. They also collected household items to help the VA Homeless Veterans Program and participated in building a children’s play area at SafeNet, a domestic-abuse shelter.
GE Transportation is dedicated to GE’s environmental promise, “ecomagination,” and believes that the ecomagination designation is more than just a name. In 2011, GE Transportation invested more than $125 million in research and development for ecomagination products and services. And within the past year, we have requalified 15 products and added five new products to our ecomagination portfolio.
GE Transportation’s ecomagination-qualified products comprise a wide variety of locomotives, signaling systems and energy-storage devices. Products include the Evolution® Series Locomotive, which uses 6% less fuel per HP-hour than other Tier 2 locomotives while reducing atmospheric emissions by approximately 40% compared with previous GE models. Introduced in the United Kingdom, GE Transportation’s PowerHaul™ Series Locomotive has expanded its global presence to Asia, Australia and continental Europe, and delivers up to an incredible 9% fuel savings compared with operating-fleet averages.
For marine applications, GE Transportation’s L250 6-cylinder engine produces fewer particulates (PM) and less CO2 per year, equivalent to the annual emissions of approximately 50 cars.
Not only does the environment benefit from these efforts, our customers also see results in their bottom lines and in their environmental impact. For example, Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) moves approximately 120 million tons of freight across nearly 15,000 miles of track each year. By using 200 of GE Transportation’s ecomagination-qualified Evolution Series Locomotives equipped with the ecomagination-qualified Trip Optimizer System, CP is saving between 200 and 330 tons of CO2 emissions per locomotive. The railway is also realizing a 5% fuel savings, depending on territory, on the intermodal freight of various train lengths.
In South Africa, GE Transportation’s ecomagination-qualified C30ACi Locomotive’s greater hauling ability allows a customer to use two C30ACi models to maintain the same hauling potential as three older locomotives, reducing emissions by 1,500 metric tons (MT) of CO2 annually, the equivalent to the annual CO2 emissions of more than 300 cars.
Our environmental efforts are not limited to our products. For example, by implementing several projects, including converting powerhouse boilers from coal to gas-fired, GE Transportation has surpassed our 2015 reduction goal for CO2 emissions. A 2011 pilot recycling program at the Erie plant has identified recycling opportunities at the facility with a goal to recycle at least 50% of materials that currently go to the landfill, including wood, cardboard and plastic.
An engine-liner team at the Grove City, Pa., plant identified fiber-optic laser technology that was cost-effective and reduced environmental impact. This new fiber-optic laser has drastically reduced power demand, resulting in daily operating savings of approximately $500. The team also switched the shield gas from a mixture of argon and helium to ultra-pure nitrogen, for a savings of $324 each time the 12-pack of gas tanks is changed.
While GE Transportation is solving challenges globally, we are contributing to strong economies locally. In Erie County, Pa., home to our Global Locomotive headquarters, a Tripp Umbach study found that one in every 11 jobs is supported directly or indirectly by GE Transportation. In fact, GE Transportation’s operations contribute $2.7 billion annually in Erie County alone.
Our economic impact statewide also is dramatic. Within Pennsylvania, GE Transportation supports one in approximately 350 jobs and generates $1 of every $130 in the state’s economy. Even more remarkable is GE Transportation’s annual economic contribution to Pennsylvania; at an incredible $4.6 billion, it is larger than that of all Pennsylvania-based professional sports teams ($1.37 billion) and the state’s mining, oil and gas extraction industries ($1.79 billion) combined.
GE Transportation’s economic investments continued in 2011 with a $96 million investment in a state-of-the-art locomotive manufacturing facility in Forth Worth, Texas, as well as a $95 million, 236,000-square-foot adjacent operation that manufactures and assembles AC motorized wheels for off-highway vehicles. At these Texas facilities, GE Transportation plans to add more than 630 high-tech manufacturing jobs. And at our Grove City, Pennsylvania, plant, up to 150 new jobs will be created by 2013 as a result of our expanding operations.