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San Diego Railway Buys Green Locomotives

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A small freight railway that connects San Diego to the Mexican border showed off its "green" locomotives this week.

— A small freight railway that connects San Diego to the Mexican border showed off its "green" locomotives this week.

The San Diego and Imperial Valley Railroad got $1.7 million in state grants to buy what they call the latest in energy-efficient train engines. The two locomotives were on display at the Santa Fe train depot. While they look like regular locomotives, Don Seil, the railroad's general manager, said they're quieter. He said they use less fuel and have dramatically lower emissions than the old technologies they're replacing.

"They're reducing the amount of pollutants going into the air, particulate matter, by 50 percent," said Seil. "It's also reducing the amount of nitric oxides going into the air by 85 to 90 percent."

Each locomotive has three small diesel engines that can be used all at once or one at a time. A spokesman for the company that makes the locomotives says about 300 are now operating in the U.S.

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