AusRAIL, Market Sectors

News in Brief ? 26 May 1 June 2010

<span class="" id="parent-fieldname-description"> </span> <p><strong>CBH to refund $8m in freight costs to growers</strong><br />By Sam Collyer<br />CBH Group will refund about $8m to its grain grower members after limiting its transportation costs for Western Australia’s freight task in 2008/09. <br />5000 growers stood to benefit from the reduced cost of freight, which the group attributes to its widely-recognised Grain Express system.<br />The figure includes the 4.25% in interest the group had accumulated in that time.<br />Freight began being charged directly to growers in that financial year to give members more transparency.<br />CBH said the surplus was designed to avoid fluctuations in freight costs between good and bad years.<br />The money will be paid to growers in the form of a rebate.<br />Source: Lloyd’s List Daily Commercial News – <a target="_blank" href=""></a></p><p><strong>QR expands apprentice recruitment by 20%</strong><br />By Sam Collyer<br />QR plans to recruit 120 apprentices across a broad range of trades as part of a 20% increase in its apprenticeship intake this year. <br />The apprenticeship program will source electricians, mechanical fitters, telecommunication technicians, vehicle builders, carpenters, plumbers, painters, sign writers and cookery.<br />Positions will be offered across the state and will involve both the passenger service and the freight haulage group, QR National, which is to be privatised later this year.<br />QR currently employs 16,000 people across Australia.<br />Source: Lloyd’s List Daily Commercial News – <a target="_blank" href=""></a></p><p><strong>QLD: towards sustainable transport</strong><br />Queensland ransport minister Rachel Nolan launched the state’s new Office of Sustainable Transport, which will operate out of the Department of Transport and Main Roads.<br />“With transport accounting for more than 10% of Queensland’s total emissions, we have to take a long hard look at how we travel,” Nolan said.<br />“The OST will aim to deliver more sustainable transport solutions for Queensland. This dedicated team is charged with taking a futuristic look at transport solutions across the state.”<br />Nolan said government would seek advice from key stakeholders on OST policies including the RACQ, Australian Conservation Foundation, Queensland Conservation Council, Bicycle Queensland, Rail Back on Track, Queensland Trucking Association, Queensland Bus Industry Council, Taxi Council of Queensland, and Heart Foundation.<br />The Office is also working closely with the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) and the Queensland Conservation Council on a Sustainable Transport Forum.</p><p><strong>HSR for UK, says Queen</strong><br />The UK’s coalition government has promised the construction of a high-speed rail network in the country as part of a programme of measures for a low-carbon economy, it was reported.<br />Queen Elizabeth II reportedly told parliament that the high-speed rail network bill will be introduced.<br />The proposed rail plan is expected to include links between UK airports, according to the BBC.</p><p><strong>Railway earthing fundamentals course</strong><br />A 2 day course detailing the key system requirements and design parameters for those who have had little exposure to earthing in a rail environment will be held in Melbourne, 15th-16th September and Brisbane, 27th-28th October.<br />The course provides participants with a sound basis in science and practical examples for understanding and problem solving with earthing systems in the rail environment.<br />The course begins with an introduction to the physics of earthing including the areas of circuit fundamentals, conductive effects, proximity, mutual earth resistance and inductive coupling.<br />It will then cover soil resistivity fundamentals, field testing and model assessment and derivation before moving on to empirical and analytical voltage design methods and analysis issues for typical applications.<br />The course includes interactive practical session where we will ‘see’ how specific changes and errors affect outcomes which is invaluable in turning information into understanding.<br />Over the course participants will be invited to present real life issues and examples they have wrestled with, which will then be analysed using the understanding and skills developed during the program.<br />For more information or to register visit: <a target="_blank" href=""></a><br />Or email: <a href=""></a><br />Or phone: (+61 2) 9080 4050 (Quote GI5055).<br /><br /><strong>Rio Tinto delivers upbeat metals forecast</strong><br />By Sineva Toevai<br />Demand for metals such as iron, copper and aluminum is expected to double in the next 15 years, according to Rio Tinto chief executive Tom Albanese. <br />Speaking at the company’s annual general meeting in Melbourne yesterday, Albanese said the primary drivers of demand were urbanisation and industrialisation in emerging markets.<br />“By 2030, the additional supply required will be equivalent to replicating the iron ore output of the Pilbara region of Australia every five years, adding another aluminium production complex the size of Canada’s Saguenay every nine months and developing another copper mine the size of Escondida in Chile each year,” he said.<br />The global iron ore market remained “very positive,” Albanese said.<br />Since beginning in 1966, Rio Tinto’s Pilbara operations have exported 3bn tonnes of iron ore.<br />“Sales volumes from the Pilbara set a new record,” he said.<br />“The product group was once again by far the largest contributor to underlying earnings at $4bn, almost $2bn lower than in 2008, due mainly to lower benchmark and spot prices.”<br />Source: Lloyd’s List Daily Commercial News – <a target="_blank" href=""></a></p><p><strong>Outstanding innovation in public transport</strong><br />The winners of the award for outstanding innovation in public transport have been announced by the International Transport Forum (ITF) and the International Association of Public Transport (UITP).<br />&bull&nbspOveral winner: Consorcio Rgional de Transports de Madrid, Spain for their Intergrated Transport Plan<br />&bull&nbspJoint Runners-up: Arriva Southern Counties and Kent County Council, UK, and Ahmedabad Janmarg, India, both for their Bus Rapid Transit systems Special mentions:<br />Special Mention for Innovation on the Transport Horizon to be presented to Leipziger Verkehrsbetriebe (LVB), Germany, for the easy.GO mobile travel information and ticketing service<br />&bull&nbspSpecial Mention for Transport Operation-Wide Application of Innovation to be presented to Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation, India, for application of innovation through their operations incorporating management, leadership, technology, and employee services<br />&bull&nbspSpecial Mention for Strategic Vision of Innovation in Public Transport – Doubling the market share of public transport across the country, in line with UITP Strategy for public transport sector – to be presented to The Swedish Public Transport Association, Sweden.<br />&nbsp</p>