South Korea introduced the KTX-Eum, a low-carbon bullet train in Wonju, Gangwon Province. KTX-Eum is a high-speed electrical train managed by Korea Railroad Corporation and manufactured by Hyundai Rotem.
President Moon Jae-in gave a speech during the KTX-Eum launch and participated in the test run. Moon said that the low-carbon, environment-friendly bullet train represents South Korea’s advancements towards becoming a leading country.
“This year will mark the first year of the nation’s adoption of low-carbon, eco-friendly trains,” President Moon announced. “Ultimately, Korea will become a powerhouse in the field of high-end transport infrastructure by adopting advanced technologies into our railways, roads, airports, and ports overall.”
South Korea’s first electric multiple unit train has a maximum speed of 260 (162 miles) kilometers per hour. The KTX-Eum has no separate locomotive and incorporates self-propelled cars powered by electricity. The manufacturers equipped the train with an enhanced brake and acceleration system.
Unlike earlier high-speed train models, the KTX-Eum features better armrests and legroom, USB ports, Internet connection, and charging stations. It only discharges 70 percent of the emissions from diesel-powered trains.
The distributed power train is designed to help reduce carbon emissions in railway travels. It has the capacity to accommodate up to 381 passengers. Starting this Tuesday, the six-car unit train will run from Wonju in Gangwon Province to Jecheon in Chungcheongbuk Province.
Sustainable energy and transport
Releasing the new bullet train is part of the country’s “Green New Deal,” which involves advanced technology investments. The Green New Deal targets to implement the use of renewable energy and establish low-carbon operations in South Korea.
“We will replace all diesel passenger trains with the KTX-Eum by 2029 and establish eco-friendly railway transport nationwide,” President Moon said. “By doing that, we will cut 70,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, which is equivalent to planting 10 million pine trees, and advance to a carbon neutral society.”
Additionally, the South Korean President announced plans to expand South Korea’s railway technology and networks to aid further regional developments. The railway expansion plan could speed up the commuting time throughout Seoul and other major cities by 30 minutes.
“If roads were the arteries of economic development in the 20th century for us, railways are the main arteries of economic and social development in the 21st century,” Moon stated.
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