European rail companies collaborate to drive supply chain sustainability

18 March 2015

A group of six rail companies have launched an initiative to promote sustainable procurement in the global railway supply chain.

Alstom Transport, Bombardier Transportation, Deutsche Bahn, Knorr-Bremse, Nederlandse Spoorwegen and SNCF have founded Railsponsible, which aims to ensure all railway suppliers have good ethical, social, environmental and business practices in place.

The scheme will encourage supplier participation in assessment campaigns, hold quarterly membership meetings to share best practice, analyse data to identify supply chain priorities and promote the initiative to the rail industry.

The group's first priority is to promote supplier assessments, to be carried out by EcoVadis. Suppliers will have to respond to one common questionnaire and will have full control over who can see their information and assessment results. They can opt to share this information with any of the Railsponsible members who are their customers.

The collaboration is supported by BSR, a non-profit organisation that works with global business on sustainability issues.

Railsponsible said as social, environmental, ethical and economic issues are correlated with supply chain risk and opportunity, companies including those in the rail sector, are increasingly demanding more evidence from suppliers about their practices.

The six founding members have signed a charter to officially launch Railsponsible and are inviting other companies, suppliers and key industry associations in the rail industry to join.

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