Night train to Brussels

Posted: January 20, 2020 by oldbrew in climate, Emissions, Travel
Tags: ,

Austria’s ‘nightjet’ train

All aboard the virtue signallers’ express! In nuclear-free Austria that is – possibly the only country to fully build a nuclear plant and never operate it.
– – –
The first night train to set off for Belgium in 16 years departed from Vienna Sunday, carrying Austrian and European politicians who hope the new route can set an example as the continent tries to meet its climate targets, reports

The carriages of the “OBB Nightjet” pulled out of Vienna’s main station punctually at 8:38 pm to the strains of a live band playing the EU anthem “Ode to Joy”, the slogan #loveyourplanet emblazoned along their sides.

Scheduled to arrive in Brussels at 10:55 am on Monday, the rail journey emits less than a tenth of the CO2 per passenger than the equivalent flight.

Austrian state railway company OeBB has for several years been a pioneer in the revival of night trains, and OeBB board chairman Andreas Matthae said he was “proud” of the new route.

Joining a clutch of Austrian MEPs was Martin Selmayr, previously the powerful chief of staff to European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and now the EU’s representative in Vienna.

For British holidaymaker Daniel, 35, the train was the clear choice—not for environmental reasons but for comfort.

“No airport routine, it’s nice and easy… it’s relaxing,” he told AFP.

Liesbet Vandebroek, who lives in Austria but works for the tourism authority of Belgium’s Flanders region, said it was important for her to make the frequent journey to Brussels with “as small a footprint as possible” but also waxed lyrical about the romance of the night train.

“As a student I travelled everywhere with the night train, it’s so leisurely… and very nostalgic,” said Vandebroek.

The Vienna to Brussels service will initially run on Sundays and Wednesdays.

Full report here.

  1. oldbrew says:

    British politicians will soon save even more ‘carbon’ by not going to Brussels at all 🙂

    Will it catch on?

  2. Captain Crunch says:

    The Philippines also has a nuclear power plant that has never been operated. Built under President Ferdinand Marcos, it was completed just as was ousted by the first People Power revolution. His successor, Cory Aquino, promptly had it mothballed, in case its operation would make people believe that Marcos had done some good things. Today some infrastructure plans first drawn up by the Marcos regime are finally being implemented.

  3. JB says:

    Not a word whether the train was fully booked or not. Airlines at least strive to fly at full capacity.

  4. Saighdear says:

    What’s the connection? Scheduled to arrive in Brussels at 10:55 am on Monday – obviously passengers are not even Bankers. Day is almost finished for work. Looks like a Virtue signallers trip …. Ah, Oh, maybe for a connection to report on our Bablin Bi-assed Cohorts

  5. JohnM de France says:

    I wonder how Martin Selmayr and President Jean-Claude Juncker went from Brussels to Vienna ?

    Train or plane ?

  6. rogercaiazza says:

    New York State built a reactor and never operated it too. To top that off now the State is going to turn off two more reactors before their useful end of life.

  7. oldbrew says:

    At Trip Advisor 44% of reviewers rated the nightjet experience ‘terrible’.

    The carriages were bought 2nd hand from the German rail system in 2016.

  8. Curious George says:

    A nice window into a Brussels politician’s day: Never start working before noon.

  9. oldbrew says:

    It is possible to work on trains these days. Whether that happens or not on this one is another matter 😎

  10. stpaulchuck says:

    So once again, posturing pols take a photo op trip on a train, then take planes to their business while trying to kill off our food plants by starving them of CO2. Brilliant.

  11. tom0mason says:

    So the EU’s blue sky thinking is to regress back to train travel.
    That figures!

  12. Adam Gallon says:

    The distance from Vienna to Brussels, by train, is 915km. The train’s averaging about 65kph.
    A flight takes around 1 hr 45 mins to do the same trip.
    Add in hanging around at the airport for check in, etc & same at other end, assuming you’ve luggage to collect, let’s say 5 hours for the journey.
    Any bets that if the service continues, it’ll require a large tax payer subsidy?

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