National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak) is a majority state-owned company headquartered in the USA. In 2020 its revenue was USD 2.43 billion. Amtrak operates a network of long- and short-distance and high-speed intercity passenger rail services serving 46 states in America and reaching 400 additional destinations via connecting bus routes.
Amtrak does not disclose data on research and development (R&D) expenditure or what proportion of its R&D expenditure is invested in low-carbon vehicles and energies. R&D expenditure on low-carbon vehicles and energies will be essential for Amtrak to develop a low-carbon product portfolio/fleet. The company should ensure that a significant proportion of its R&D investment is in low-carbon vehicles and fuel development.
There is no evidence that Amtrak has a low-carbon transition plan. The company should establish a time-bound action plan that outlines how it will transition to a low-carbon economy. This should include medium- and long-term targets, verifiable and quantifiable key performance indicators and financial commitments. Furthermore, the plan should be informed by scenario analysis to ensure that the company’s ambition is sufficient to align with a 1.5°C pathway.
Since Amtrak depends on state financing, it has engaged with partner states to accomplish its 2020-2024 re-fleeting strategy. Beyond re-fleeting, however, there is no evidence that the company uses its influence with local public authorities to assist with developing climate policies to reduce emissions.
As a major US provider of passenger rail services, Amtrak has the opportunity to influence customer behaviour in favour of low-carbon transport. Nevertheless, it currently fails to encourage customers to choose rail as a low-carbon mode, compared to road and air transport.
The company should set out a clear strategy to promote its low-carbon solutions to customers. This could include providing financial incentives such as discounts or engaging in marketing campaigns.
Amtrak receives a trend score of -. If the company were reassessed in the near future, its score would likely decrease. Amtrak has set a target to reduce its passenger scope 1 and 2 absolute emissions by 40% by 2030 compared to 2010. However, the company has not yet set a net-zero target. The company also does not have a transition plan to support its emissions reduction targets. Nor does it have clear strategies to increase its low-carbon vehicle fleet and expand the US national rail network to aid in the shift away from high-emitting modes of transport.
Amtrak has set a target to reduce its passenger scope 1 and 2 absolute emissions by 40% by 2030 compared to 2010. The company has not yet set a net-zero target. Amtrak’s target does not look beyond the average lifetime of its vehicles. Further, Amtrak does not have regularly spaced interim targets that can drive current action towards the company’s long-term emissions reduction goal.
Amtrak’s low-carbon strategy is limited to fleet modernisation (with an unspecified share of low-carbon vehicles) and national rail expansion. The company does not disclose a comprehensive transition plan to achieving its emissions reduction target and low-carbon strategy.
Amtrak has engaged with partner states to accomplish its 2020-2024 re-fleeting strategy that relies on acquiring lower carbon dual-power propulsion and electric assets. The company does not disclose data on R&D expenditure in low-carbon technologies.
Amtrak’s 2030 target is undermined by the lack of a low-carbon transition plan. Amtrak should develop a comprehensive transition plan that not only aims at increasing the proportion of low-carbon vehicles in its fleet at scale but also extends the US rail network to aid in behavioural change towards low-carbon modes of transport.
No evidence was found of the company’s commitment to social dialogue or of the categories of stakeholders the company engages with on a just transition. Furthermore, no evidence was found to demonstrate the company’s ongoing social dialogue and meaningful engagement with affected stakeholders.
No evidence was found of the company undertaking low-carbon transition planning to mitigate the social impacts of the transition on workers, affected stakeholders and its business relationships. Additionally, no evidence was found to demonstrate the company’s engagement in social dialogue or engagement with stakeholders in its just transition planning.
No public commitment by the company was found stating its intention to create and support access to green and decent jobs as part of the low-carbon transition. Moreover, no evidence was found of the company’s action to promote these jobs in a way that ensures gender balance and inclusion of vulnerable groups. Additionally, no relevant disclosure was found of the company’s assessment of employment dislocation risks.
No public commitment by the company was found stating its intention to reskill and upskill workers displaced by the transition to a low-carbon economy. Additionally, no evidence was found that the company reskills and upskills workers in a way that ensures gender balance and inclusion of vulnerable groups.
No relevant disclosure was found to show if the company identifies impacts of the low-carbon transition on social protection for workers and affected stakeholders, nor how it contributes to social protection. Additionally, no evidence was found that the company expects its business relationships to contribute to the social protection of their workers and affected stakeholders.
No relevant disclosure was found to show how the company identifies any misalignment of its lobbying activities with policies and regulations that support the just transition, nor of the measures it takes to address misalignment. Furthermore, no evidence was found that the company lobbies for policies and regulations for green and decent job creation; retention, education and reskilling; and social protection for workers.
No policies or commitments of the company related to respect for human rights were found in the public domain. This includes the necessary policies and systems by which the company can ensure respect for basic human rights in its operations and supply chain.
The company discloses some information on collective bargaining and workforce diversity fundamentals. However, it can strengthen its disclosure on these topics as well on other issues related to decent work, including the provision of secure, safe and healthy workplaces, where workers are fairly remunerated and have a meaningful say in decision-making.
No policies or commitments of the company related to key ethical business topics – personal data protection, tax, bribery and corruption, and lobbying and political engagement – were found in the public domain. This includes commitments towards ensuring ethical business conduct throughout its operations and in its relationships with business partners.