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KKR ESG & Citizenship Report

Eco-Efficiency: European Locomotive Leasing

Reducing the Impact of Rail Travel

Key Environmental Performance Area:

  • Greenhouse Gas Emissions (Products and Services)

Features an all-electric fleet of rail locomotives.

Operates training academy to enhance engineers’ ability to operate locomotives efficiently.

All data and information in this case study are as of December 31, 2015, unless otherwise noted.


While rail may be considered to be one of the most energy efficient modes of transportation, the rail industry continues to reduce its energy impact by shifting from diesel to electric trains. Trains operating on diesel have double the energy intensity compared to electric trains, in both passenger and freight rail transport, resulting in increased energy expenditures. Technological and operational improvements can continue to help the rail sector be a sustainable transport option.i

European Locomotive Leasing provides full-service locomotive leasing solutions to the European railway industry. Its state-of-the-art AC, DC, and MS locomotives are suitable for freight and passenger transportation.

In the challenging environment of the growing railway market, within two years European Locomotive Leasing has established its company to be more than a locomotive lessor to its customers, but a partner who provides its customers with additional services covering their special needs.


European Locomotive Leasing seeks to not only provide modern electric locomotives for European rail freight traffic but also minimize impact on the environment. The three main drivers behind the positive impact European Locomotive Leasing has on the environment are:

  • 100% Electric Fleet: The fleet consists exclusively of state-of-the-art electric locomotives, which are more efficient than traditional diesel engine locomotives. The fleet includes the Vectron locomotives that use the newest technology in the market.
  • Rail Power Box: European Locomotive Leasing has also leveraged the latest technology to enhance the environmental performance of the fleet through improved routing. All the company's Vectrons are fitted with a rail power box that enables European Locomotive Leasing to locate locomotives via GPS and draw an energy profile of each locomotive and its route, which can help save energy.
  • European Locomotive Leasing Academy: European Locomotive Leasing has launched an academy to train its customers’ engineers on how to operate the locomotives in a cost-effective and energy-efficient manner. This will enable the company's customers to reduce energy use and related costs.

European Locomotive Leasing began participating in KKR’s green program in 2016 and expects to communicate results in 2017.

i International Energy Agency and International Union of Railways. “Railway Handbook 2015.” International Energy Agency and International Union of Railways. 2015. Web. 25 July 2016.

ii Self-reported portfolio company data is not calculated, reviewed or independently verified by KKR or KKR Capstone. For more information regarding the results methodology for companies evaluating their own data, please see the methodology section. There is no guarantee that any GSP-related avoided costs or added efficiencies will positively impact the portfolio company's valuation or performance.

Unless otherwise noted, portfolio company data represents 2015 results, published in August 2016. These case studies may contain forward looking statements including descriptions of planned projects and projected results and savings. These statements are subject to the risk that the projects will not develop as planned or at all or that projected results and savings are not realized.