Decarbonising Scotland’s Railways

clc

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Noticed these ‘Rail Demand Assumptions’ on pages 123-125 of the Zero Emission Energy for Transport Report published last month:

2023

 Electrification Complete: Glasgow Central to Barrhead

2024

 Electrification Complete: Glasgow Central to East Kilbride

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: Glasgow Central to Barrhead Using existing EMUs - Class 156 units withdrawn

2025

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: Glasgow Central to East Kilbride Some services use existing EMUs - Class 156 units withdrawn

2026

 Electrification Complete: Edinburgh to Tweedbank

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: Edinburgh to Tweedbank (Battery Electric for Scenarios 4 and 5) Class 158 units transferred to West Highland lines; all Class 156 units withdrawn from West Highland

2027

 Electrification Complete: Fife Circle / Dundee / Perth; and Barrhead to Kilmarnock

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: Edinburgh / Glasgow to Perth / Dundee and Fife Circle (Battery Electric for scenarios 4 and 5) Class 158 units transferred to South West Scotland; all Class 156 units withdrawn from South West Scotland

2028

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: In 2028 it is assumed that all Diesel Multiple Units running under overhead electric wires are removed from Glasgow Queen Street to Cumbernauld, Falkirk, Alloa and Dunblane and from Edinburgh Waverley to Dunblane. Inverness to Wick / Thurso (hydrogen in all Scenarios) - Class 158 units withdrawn

2029

 Electrification Complete: Glasgow Queen Street / Edinburgh Waverley to Perth / Dundee / Arbroath

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: In 2029 it is assumed that all Diesel Multiple Units running under overhead electric wires are removed from Edinburgh to Glasgow, North Electrics, South Electrics, Argyle Line, Paisley Canal, Inverclyde, Glasgow Central to Ardrossan, Largs and Ayr and Edinburgh Waverley to North Berwick and Dunbar.

Glasgow Queen Street / Edinburgh Waverley to Dundee / Arbroath (Battery Electric for Scenarios 4 and 5) - Some Class 158 units withdrawn / Class 170 units cascaded north Glasgow Queen Street to Anniesland (Battery Electric for Scenarios 4 and 5) - Class 158 units withdrawn

Inverness to Kyle of Lochalsh (hydrogen in all Scenarios) - Class 158 units withdrawn

2030

 Electrification complete: Montrose to Aberdeen

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: Aberdeen to Montrose (Battery Electric for Scenarios 4 and 5) – Class 158 units withdrawn / 170 units cascaded to Southwest Scotland Glasgow Queen Street / Edinburgh Waverley to Aberdeen (Battery Electric for Scenarios 4 and 5) - HST Fleet Withdrawn / Class 170 units cascaded north West Highland Line (hydrogen in all Scenarios) - Class 158 units withdrawn

2035

 Electrification Complete: Perth to Inverness; Ayr to Girvan & Kilmarnock to Carlisle via Dumfries

 Service Introductions and Rolling Stock Notes: Glasgow Queen Street / Edinburgh Waverley to Aberdeen / Inverness (Battery Electric for Scenarios 4 and 5) - Class 170 units withdrawn Glasgow Central to Stranraer, Dumfries and Carlisle via Kilmarnock - Remaining Class 158 and Class 170 units withdrawn
Here’s a link to the report: https://www.transport.gov.scot/medi...nd-forecasts-for-electricity-and-hydrogen.pdf

The scenarios referred to are on pages 60-62.
 
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GRALISTAIR

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Noticed these ‘Rail Demand Assumptions’ on pages 123-125 of the Zero Emission Energy for Transport Report published last month:
Here’s a link to the report: https://www.transport.gov.scot/medi...nd-forecasts-for-electricity-and-hydrogen.pdf
The scenarios referred to are on pages 60-62.
I am sure there may be a little slippage on the timescales but never forget - Scotland is serious about this and there seems to be the political will.


This is what caught my eye though.
2027 Electrification Complete: Fife Circle / Dundee / Perth; and Barrhead to Kilmarnock
 

waverley47

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That's fantastic news - though 18 months does seem a bit long for just over seven miles of track.

There's a new feeder station going in at Currie that will help beef up the supply in the Edinburgh area, and it doesn't make sense to rush if there are no battery trains to use it.

This scheme is being talked about internally as a learning experience with different techniques for insulating bridges ect, which on a simple two track line does make sense.

Furthermore, there's also the Dalmeny chord to do and some point work at the south end of the bridge, including an insulating section there, so it's not a completely plain line scheme.

https://www.transport.gov.scot/news...ish-government-investment-in-decarbonisation/ electrification to Dalmeny is to begin construction this month! And procurement of replacement trains for class 156, 318, and 320 trains is also to begin

The general assumption internally with this is that they're trying to wait until such a time as the 385 production issues are sorted out as to allow fleet commonality, and it seems to be a shoe in for Hitachi, however there are alternatives in the works - watch this space.
 

najaB

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This scheme is being talked about internally as a learning experience with different techniques for insulating bridges ect, which on a simple two track line does make sense.

Furthermore, there's also the Dalmeny chord to do and some point work at the south end of the bridge, including an insulating section there, so it's not a completely plain line scheme.
Aye, that's true. I did wonder if they were going to do Dalmeny to Winchburgh as well so that EMUs have an alternative route (with a reversal for now).
 

Signal_Box

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Cancelling hundreds of trains a week is going some way to their target….maybe just not in the way they intended ?
 

numtot12345

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There's a new feeder station going in at Currie that will help beef up the supply in the Edinburgh area, and it doesn't make sense to rush if there are no battery trains to use it.

This scheme is being talked about internally as a learning experience with different techniques for insulating bridges ect, which on a simple two track line does make sense.

Furthermore, there's also the Dalmeny chord to do and some point work at the south end of the bridge, including an insulating section there, so it's not a completely plain line scheme.



The general assumption internally with this is that they're trying to wait until such a time as the 385 production issues are sorted out as to allow fleet commonality, and it seems to be a shoe in for Hitachi, however there are alternatives in the works - watch this space.
I remember at one time Hitachi were developing battery packs to bolt onto 385s - is this still the case? And would make sense from a commonality point for the fleet too.

Aye, that's true. I did wonder if they were going to do Dalmeny to Winchburgh as well so that EMUs have an alternative route (with a reversal for now).
Anyone know what the latest is on Dalmeny, and what option they decided to go with in relation to the grade separation?
 

snowball

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That's fantastic news - though 18 months does seem a bit long for just over seven miles of track.
It's 2.5 years isn't it? June 2022 to December 2024.

Anyone know what the latest is on Dalmeny, and what option they decided to go with in relation to the grade separation?
I don't think the Almond chord is going going to be built in the next 5-10 years, and I don't think the wiring announced today includes Winchburgh to Dalmeny. Given the spending cuts and financial black hole being announced by the Scottish government, I think they deserve congratulation for sticking to the rail decarbonisation/electrification targets published in 2020.
 
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GRALISTAIR

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Given the spending cuts and financial black hole being announced by the Scottish government, I think they deserve congratulation for sticking to the rail decarbonisation/electrification targets published in 2020.
Exactly my thoughts too. I was worried that everything would be delayed by one parliament/control period.
 

Bald Rick

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Exactly my thoughts too. I was worried that everything would be delayed by one parliament/control period.

they have the money now, as a result of the Barnett formula and HS2 spend.

Will be good to see battery trains appear en masse, to show how it can be done.
 

clc

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they have the money now, as a result of the Barnett formula and HS2 spend.

Will be good to see battery trains appear en masse, to show how it can be done.
The Scottish Government’s Capital Spending Review was published on Tuesday and it confirmed what funding would be available for rail enhancements:-

2022/23 - £247 million
2023/24 - £238 million
2024/25 - £397 million
2025/26 - £273 million

So yes the money is there.

I think the Scottish Government sees electrification as an important part of its industrial strategy as it supports lots of high value jobs in Scotland. It is also putting a lot of money into electric buses which supports manufacturing jobs at ADL in Falkirk.
 
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GLC

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In all, there'll be four phases of work. The second section of electrification will be from north of Kinghorn to Thornton North Junction, where numerous routes diverge. This will be followed by the line from Thornton to Lochgelly, and then from Thornton to Ladybank. /21654162010288.jpeg

Taken from https://twitter.com/NetworkRailSCOT/status/1532285207079944193

The next tweet in the thread goes on to confirm that BEMUs will then be introduced to take advantage of this partial wiring
 

Tayway

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So is the plan to partially wire the Fife Circle in order for BEMUs to operate as far as Perth and Dundee, which can then be cascaded elsewhere when the trickier sections (such as the Forth and Tay Bridges) are completed and replaced by pure EMUs? The map also seems to be missing Levenmouth, which is being electrified at the same time as the line is rebuilt.

Edit – here's the press release, which goes into more detail about the reasonings behind the partial electrification, and also mentions the procurement of new trains to replace the 156s and 318/320s: https://www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk/news/piling-work-to-get-underway-to-electrify-lines-to-fife

Partial Electrification

The ‘partial’ electrification approach to the decarbonisation of the railway - beyond delivering a reduction in carbon emissions, will also reduce the ongoing net cost to the taxpayer of operating the railway at an earlier point.

Reduced upfront infrastructure and associated capital expenditure makes projects more affordable and enables electrification of key trunk routes to start as a priority so the benefits of electrified railways will be realised earlier. Additionally, it does not preclude full electrification occurring at a future date.

The Fife electrification scheme has been approved for partial electrification, using battery electric multiple units, and further development work is to be undertaken to support this. The project is part of the plan to decarbonise the passenger railway network by 2035.

Rolling stock procurement

Approval has also been given hold a procurement competition to identify a preferred manufacturer and financier for new suburban trains to operate decarbonised rail passenger services on the routes covered by East Kilbride, Fife and Borders routes, replacing 42 Class 156 trains and to replace the 55 Class 318 and 320 trains operating in the Strathclyde area.
 

Starmill

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So is the plan to partially wire the Fife Circle in order for BEMUs to operate as far as Perth and Dundee, which can then be cascaded elsewhere when the trickier sections (such as the Forth and Tay Bridges) are completed and replaced by pure EMUs? The map also seems to be missing Levenmouth, which is being electrified at the same time as the line is rebuilt.

Edit – here's the press release, which goes into more detail about the reasonings behind the partial electrification, and also mentions the procurement of new trains to replace the 156s and 318/320s: https://www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk/news/piling-work-to-get-underway-to-electrify-lines-to-fife
They will probably just have the batteries removed as and when they're no longer needed. Or they may be partially retained in a similar fashion to that of an 803.

The top priority is to displace 156s, as this avoids the expense of any life extension works to them.

Battery units will also be used for the Maryhill line service, assuming it survives!
 

Trainbike46

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They will probably just have the batteries removed as and when they're no longer needed. Or they may be partially retained in a similar fashion to that of an 803.

The top priority is to displace 156s, as this avoids the expense of any life extension works to them.

Battery units will also be used for the Maryhill line service, assuming it survives!
It is also possible that (some of) the battery units originally used on the fife circle get displaced to other lines that won't be fully electrified (Stranraer, West highland, Kyle of Lochalsch, Far north), depending on what option ends up being chosen for those lines and the capabilities of the BEMUs Scotrail ends up getting
 

317 forever

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Cancelling hundreds of trains a week is going some way to their target….maybe just not in the way they intended ?
If they are short of drivers, they can cancel just diesel services and let electric services run as normal. Then they can say they have increased the proportion of zero-carbon services. :lol:
 

calycentral

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That may have been meant to be togue in cheek, but I actually like the idea.
It would certainly make sense to minimise diesel running under the wires where a high percentage of the journey is wired - Turbostars doing stopping Gleneagles to Queen St should maybe be cancelled until wires reach Gleneagles.
 

windingroad

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How likely is it looking, given the current economic challenges, that the original fairly comprehensive electrification plan will be completed?

I would love to see full, continuous electrification on all of the lines they mapped out previously, but the pessimist in me worries that it'll become politically expedient to go for discontinuous electrification across the board to save money, avoid the hard bits, and still be able to say "look, we decarbonised the network". But I know very little about any of the engineering challenges so perhaps that isn't feasible?
 

najaB

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How likely is it looking, given the current economic challenges, that the original fairly comprehensive electrification plan will be completed?
Without a crystal ball it's impossible to give a definitive answer, but I think the determination is there to see things through as much as possible.
I would love to see full, continuous electrification on all of the lines they mapped out previously, but the pessimist in me worries that it'll become politically expedient to go for discontinuous electrification across the board to save money, avoid the hard bits, and still be able to say "look, we decarbonised the network".
While some amount of this is almost inevitable, the positive way to look at it is that discontinuous electrification doesn't have to be the end state. It can and should be seen as a pause to catch breath before taking on the difficult bits at a later date.
 

mcmad

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While some amount of this is almost inevitable, the positive way to look at it is that discontinuous electrification doesn't have to be the end state. It can and should be seen as a pause to catch breath before taking on the difficult bits at a later date.
I don't disagree but the politicians answer is likely to be once they've invested in a BEMU fleet then the hard bits don't need doing until the BEMU's are up for renewal.
 

windingroad

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While some amount of this is almost inevitable, the positive way to look at it is that discontinuous electrification doesn't have to be the end state. It can and should be seen as a pause to catch breath before taking on the difficult bits at a later date.
You're right, and it'll all be done eventually. I suppose (a little selfishly) I'm being impatient because it would be great to see it all done sooner rather than later so I can enjoy it! It's also nice to see under-invested areas get access to proper infrastructure rather than a slightly half-hearted solution. But discontinuous is still a long way better than nothing.
 

themiller

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I don't disagree but the politicians answer is likely to be once they've invested in a BEMU fleet then the hard bits don't need doing until the BEMU's are up for renewal.
There’ll be an opportunity at the point when the batteries need to be replaced rather than waiting for end of life of the units.
 

waverley47

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There’ll be an opportunity at the point when the batteries need to be replaced rather than waiting for end of life of the units.
Indeed, also continuous wiring is both cheaper and easier to maintain mechanically, with fewer things to go wrong.

Its inevitable that the whole lot is done, but once you've done the easy bits, coming back and doing the hard bits is something worth taking your time over, as you only get to do it once.

Take the tunnel at Kinghorn for example. Its worth taking a couple of years to let technology mature with insulators ect, to decide if it's best to bite the bullet and rebore the tunnel, or if you leave it as is and wire it in situ. Same with the Forth and Tay bridges, to avoid upsetting the heritage people. If it's going to be done, you take your time and do it right; the weather over the two estuaries is brutal, and a solid solution is needed.
 

TheHSRailFan

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I'm genuinely surprised by some of these time frames, Especially with the electrification to Tweedbank. It's genuinely better than what the Gov is doing.
 

adrock1976

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What's it called? It's called Cumbernauld
I noticed that it is intended to eventually withdraw all of the Sprinters and 170s.

Has anything been mentioned of bimode/battery stock for the West Highland and the lines north of Inverness, and will it be designed as scenic stock in conjunction with for example the Shrewsbury - Swansea via Llandovery line?

Also, there seems to be no mention of the Maryhill Park line receiving wires to Anniesland and Westerton, and for a short stretch Craigendoran Junction - Helensburgh Upper either. This would be handy for the West Highland as trains can change mode at Helensburgh Upper as well as to/from the RETB signalling system rather than in the loop at Craigendoran so as to avoid blocking the Edinburgh trains as it is single track to /from Helensburgh Central.
 

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