Australia’s infrastructure is constraining the growth of agricultural
and mineral resources exports and placing unnecessary costs on
inter-modal supply chains.
Land freight on the east coast of Australia is expected to double
over the next 20 years and triple by 2050 (Australasian Railway Association Inc.).
Billions of dollars of investment is required to upgrade Australia’s road infrastructure over the next 20 years, unless lower-cost freight alternatives can be found.
Congestion in urban environments makes the “last mile” for
inter-modal freight movements unsustainable.
Australia’s freight growth challenge needs a solution.
Australian railways carried in excess of one billion tonnes of freight
in 2012-13, but only 3% was intermodal traffic.
The cost of freight movement on a modern, efficient rail system is
potentially less than half the cost of road and generates less than
30% of the greenhouse gas emissions per tonne kilometre, with an
accident rate seven times safer than road freight.
Inland rail is the solution.