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NARSTCO, The Preferred Sustainable Standard

railroad steel ties

One of the main initiatives related to sustainability is preserving our planet’s natural resources. Resources like trees, water, and soil are all directly affected by the choices the railroad industry makes when building infrastructure. The use of chemically treated wood ties has been the industry standard for many years. When considering the impact and harm wood ties have on the environment, many forward-thinking organizations that have committed to the ESG movement are changing their mindset by reevaluating processes and making decisions that are beneficial long-term, not just short-term.

In some environments, wood ties today are lasting a maximum of 3-5 years before disposal, meaning there’s a direct connection to sustainability and how we as an industry can do better. Industry personnel are realizing the ongoing issues associated with wood ties are not ideal, whether as a direct result of their sustainability focus or wood tie issues negatively impacting their bottom line. Companies are beginning to “change the standard” and move to the use of long-lasting recycled steel ties. 

By utilizing recycled steel ties instead of wood ties, the rail industry is minimizing negative environmental and financial impacts, all key components in operating more efficiently based on ESG principles. This change in mindset is leading more sustainability stakeholders to consider proven alternatives (such as steel ties) that don’t directly harm the environment during production, distribution, or use. Having compassion for the Earth and making decisions that protect our waterways, trees, and soil are paramount for our future generations’ existence.

From a green standpoint, the rail industry supports the environment better than other modes of transportation. Freight railroads are 3-4 times more fuel efficient than trucks and produce 75% less greenhouse gas emissions. The question must be asked, then, what else can the industry do to continue the sustainability movement and hold people accountable to follow through with these important choices?

NARSTCO is 100% committed to supporting the North American rail industry in furthering the sustainability movement. NARSTCO steel products are made in the United States from 100% recycled steel, are recyclable after use (50+ year life), and optimize the total cost of ownership. Using steel ties and turnouts eliminates the need for harmful chemicals and preservatives, reduces ballast volumes, and conserves natural resources. In some cases, the use of steel ties and turnouts improves the value and marketability of existing rail yards vs. yards constructed with wood ties. In a market where ecofriendly strategies are becoming more important, NARSTCO steel products are the smart and sustainable choice. To learn more about what makes NARSTCO the new preferred standard in the industry, contact our team.