VIA Rail Canada unveiled on 19APR its five-year sustainability plan and its participation in the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative, the United Nations Global Compact.
Promise for Sustainability
In 2020, VIA Rail reviewed its policies, practices, and sustainability priorities to inform the development of this future-oriented five-year sustainability plan that will help the company to reduce its environmental footprint, enhance its role as a responsible transportation provider and create “lasting value for present and future generations.”
“Sustainability is fundamentally related to our value of acting today for a better tomorrow,” said Cynthia Garneau, President and Chief Executive Officer. “It is a priority and the foundation of the future we are all building together. This plan focuses amongst others on climate action, responsible sourcing and waste management and it will be yet another way for VIA Rail to be part of the solution in helping Canada create a more sustainable future for all.”
This sustainability plan is intended to embed environmental, social and governance performance in all VIA Rail’s operations so that it can be future ready and more resilient.
VIA Rail aims to reach various objectives by 2025, including:
- Reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent or more by 2030 (compared to 2005);
- Offering zero-waste trains in the Québec City-Windsor corridor;
- Training all employees on sustainability;
- Aligning 80 per cent of community investments with the priorities of this sustainability plan;
- Reaching 80 per cent integration of the responsible sourcing policy by suppliers.
United Nations Global Compact
This plan was also designed to contribute to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Reinforcing its commitment towards responsible business practices, VIA Rail recently became the first land transportation company in Canada to join the United Nations Global Compact. It will uphold the compact’s universal sustainability principles and contribute to broader societal goals.
The full sustainability report can be found here.