Earlier this week, CP Rail unveiled its next generation of grain transportation at the G3 Pasqua elevator near Moose Jaw, Sask.
The 8,500-foot High Efficiency Product (HEP) train features new, and highly efficient, Canadian-made hopper cars, and can move approximately 44 percent more grain than the prior generation of grain train.
"A state-of-the-art loop track terminal like this is the perfect backdrop for launching our first HEP train and bringing in a new, more efficient era of moving Canada's grain to market," said Joan Hardy, CP's Vice-President Sales and Marketing – Grain and Fertilizers. "As CP continues to take delivery of new railcars, and elevator operators expand their facilities to handle 8,500-foot trains, this HEP train will become the new gold standard – driving further efficiencies for farmers, shippers and the entire grain supply chain."
G3 constructed its state-of-the-art Pasqua terminal loop track to handle the 8,500-foot-long HEP trains. The fast loading loop track means CP can keep locomotives attached to the train during loading, and those same locomotives are in place to launch the train once loading is complete.
"CP's new high-capacity hopper cars add an important link in the grain supply chain," said G3 CEO Don Chapman. "Combined with fast, efficient loading on G3 loop track systems, these trains will accelerate the flow of grain to market, to the benefit of all our customers. G3 is proud to work in close collaboration with CP."
The new hopper cars that make up the train feature a capacity 10 percent greater by weight than the older-model Government of Canada cars, and 15 percent more volume. The cars carry this extra product on a frame 5 percent shorter than the older cars, meaning more cars can fit into a train of the same length. The cars are part of a half-billion-dollar investment CP is making to upgrade its fleet.
By the end of this year, CP will have approximately 500 new hopper cars in service, and that number will grow to 1,000 by spring 2019. Over the next four years, CP plans to purchase a total of 5,900 new hopper cars.
CP moved 2.64 million metric tonnes of Canadian grain and grain products in October making it CP's biggest month ever for moving Canadian grain, breaking the record from September 2017. CP also announced that it has broken its previous record for carloads of Western Canadian grain and grain products shipped to the Port of Vancouver in a single month.