What Are the Real Effects of Rail Electrification in Hungary?



What Are the Real Effects of Rail Electrification in Hungary?

Authors

Mr. Mattias Juhász, Széchenyi István University, Dr. Tibor Princz-Jakovics, Budapest University Of Technology And Economics, Ms. Tünde Vörös, Budapest University Of Technology And Economics

Description

The objective of this paper is to assess the expected effects of Hungarian rail electrification projects and to summarize the lessons learnt. Therefore conclusions could be drawn and recommendations can be given to new EU-member states concerning the direction of railway modernization.

Abstract

In modern transport management approaches the promotion of environmental-friendly transport modes is a very important and constant feature. Rail transport could provide an especially appropriate realization of the mentioned – also emphasized in the guidelines of White Paper. Encouraging the shift to rail from other modes of transport can be observed in almost every European country. In order to reach this goal a high quality and integrated rail infrastructure is indispensable.
In Britain, the home of modern rail transport, electrification will have an important role to play in the next phase of rail modernization, as well as in other European states. The reason behind is that electric trains have several considerable advantages over diesel-powered ones. They have lower operation and environmental costs (basically less carbon and noise emissions), create the possibility to increase capacity and reliability as well as provide a better travel experience. Electrification could be the most effective solution on busier routes where the significant investment costs can be compensated with savings from running electric trains.
However, there are also doubts about the real advantages of rail electrification concerning its energy efficiency, total cost and eco-friendliness. These doubts primarily raise their head in North America, Australia and even in India. One of the most controversial questions is the issue of cost-efficiency and long-term return. These factors can be adequately analysed through recent Hungarian projects.
The objective of this paper is to assess the expected effects of Hungarian rail electrification projects and to summarize the lessons learnt. Therefore conclusions could be drawn and recommendations can be given to new EU-member states concerning the direction of railway modernization.

Publisher

Association for European Transport