Saturday, October 6, 2012

How the privatization of the Canadian National Railway affected Canada.

Over 5,000 people lost their jobs, when the CNR shops in Moncton, New Brunswick were shut down. General Motors in Oshawa, Ontario was a major customer of "The People's Railway"; they built most of the CNR's first generation diesel locomotives.
Train derailments in Canada have increased ever since the privatization of the railway, and "a lot of CN's property is very remote and next to impossible to get to without their cooperation" according to "The Tyee - One Wreck after Another". Transport Canada permits the publicly-traded company to run trains that are 80 car lengths; but CN has allegedly exceeded that limit, to over 100 cars on some routes.
The Crown corporation owned several subsidiaries, which of course are gone now.
Via Rail, a Canadian Crown corporation, has to pay CN to use it's tracks, and Via Rail does not have priority use of the tracks. Thousands of miles of CNR tracks were lifted from the ground, and probably sold as scrap metal.
CN is a billion-dollar business, while the Crown corporation CNR was a service---the railway linked remote parts of Canada, and the fares were affordable (I bought a Railway Pass for $100 dollars in 1973, which gave me the opportunity to see Canada from coast-to-coast.) Hollywood director George Lucas, the creator of "Star Wars", recently travelled across Canada on Via Rail.
 CN discontinues "unprofitable" routes, something that the Crown corporation never considered, because the government was committed to providing much-needed infrastructure; delivering mail to remote areas of Canada; uniting the, CN Rail is more interested in raking in profits, for the benefit of shareholders including Bill Gates.
When CN Rail decommissioned its Main Rail Line in Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario, the procedure was allegedly not carried out in an environmentally responsible or timely way.
 A CNR Roundhouse was demolished to make way for the SkyDome/Rogers Centre.

1 comment:

  1. Hi, I was trying to follow up on a Quebec economics profs assertion that the privatization of CN yielded $2 B bucks. This ridiculously small amount taxes one's credulity considering all the physical assets involved.
    Currently I am preparing for a submission to TISAP Ann Golden's panel reviewing GTHA transit plans, next Wednesday. My e-mail
    Hans Modlich Nov.3 2013