Florida Railroad Receives Environmental Award

June 3, 2009
Florida East Coast Railway (FEC) was among 49 companies recognized for 100% compliance by Florida utility.

JEA, a northeast Florida electric, water and sewer service utility company, has awarded the Florida East Coast Railway (FEC) its 2008 Gold Award for outstanding environmental performance in industrial wastewater pretreatment.

JEA bestows its Environmental Stewardship Awards each year to industrial wastewater permit holders that maintain discharge compliance with no violation throughout the year. A discharge violation would occur if a permit holder exceeded established limits of pollutants, such as oil, grease and chemicals, before discharging its wastewater into the public sewer system.

FEC generates wastewater through servicing its locomotives, including cleaning and refueling. The railroad’s pretreatment system removes oil, volatile compounds and other pollutants before the water is discharged into JEA’s treatment system and finally into the St. Johns River.

“By ensuring we do not pollute local water systems, we’re able to further minimize our impact on the environment, which is already extremely low when compared with other transportation modes,” said Matt Borchert, FEC manager, environmental compliance. “Overall, rail is a very fuel efficient and ‘green’ transportation option. One rail freight car can carry the equivalent of four truckloads. And, railroads consume almost a third less fuel than trucks per ton-mile moved,” he added

“This award reflects the plant operators’ diligence and dedication to maintaining quality discharges and complying with government regulations,” said David Rohal, FEC President. “Our operators are proving that full compliance can be achieved every year with the right focus and commitment.”

Florida East Coast Railway is a regional freight railroad that extends along a 351-mile corridor between Jacksonville, FL, and Miami, FL, with exclusive rail access to the Port of Palm Beach, Port Everglades (Ft. Lauderdale) and the Port of Miami.

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