© DB AG / Max Lautenschläger

Modern construction machinery ensures clean air

More traffic on the rails! For this to work, we as Deutsche Bahn must maintain and expand our rail infrastructure. After all, the decarbonization of transport can only succeed if there is a massive shift to climate-friendly rail.  

With such a large rail network, there is always something to do. That's why we also ensure clean air on our construction sites. To minimize the impact on the environment and local residents, we only use low-emission vehicles and construction equipment on our inner-city construction sites. They reduce the emission of soot particles by up to 90 percent.

Refueling with biofuel

We also rely on alternative fuels and drive systems for our trackwork vehicles. The entire rail vehicle fleet of the DB Bahnbau Group has already been approved for refueling with climate-friendly biofuel. The fuel is produced from biological residues and waste materials and is palm oil-free. The use of hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) reduces greenhouse gas emissions by around 85 to 90 percent compared to conventional diesel, depending on the composition of the raw materials. This is because only CO2e is released during combustion in the engine, which was previously removed from the atmosphere during plant growth. The rest of the greenhouse gas emissions incurred are generated when the biofuel is manufactured and transported, so in the upstream chain.

We refuel our track construction vehicles with HVO wherever it is available. To this end, we are gradually converting our refueling infrastructure. We have converted the two DB Bahnbau Group filling stations in Königsborn and Augsburg accordingly. As well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions, this also means fewer pollutants in the air. This is our commitment to low-emission construction sites.

Electric construction equipment in use

We also make use of electric construction equipment on our construction sites. At Frankfurt Central, an electric wheel loader, a hybrid excavator and a fully electric mini excavator were used to dig a trench about 500 meters long in the station's cable tunnel. We are testing a fully electric working platform for use on our construction sites as we work on building the S 21 line in Berlin.

Using electric construction equipment ensures clean air and eliminates the need for extraction systems and filters in tunnels. Their low noise emissions are an added bonus.