Maintenance of way inspecting tracks in South Carolina


From South Carolina wetlands to the Virginia coast and beyond, we continue to expand our decades-long conservation efforts driving sustainable land use and enhancing biodiversity.

Preserving an Ecological Treasure

Brosnan Forest

Norfolk Southern’s Brosnan Forest is a 14,400-acre preserve near Charleston, S.C. Renowned as an ecological treasure comparable to the Amazon rainforest, it’s home to the largest U.S. population of endangered red-cockaded woodpeckers on private land and one of the country’s largest remaining stands of longleaf pines.

We continue to expand upon our decades-long conservation efforts and to date we have restored over 800 acres (about the area of Central Park in New York City) of wetlands and 5.7 miles of streams.

Brosnan Forest

It’s All Connected

Trees and Trains

Norfolk Southern teamed up with GreenTrees, a reforestation and carbon capture company, to plant six million trees on 10,000 acres in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley, the nation’s largest watershed and a vital wildlife habitat. The multi-year Trees and Trains program restored former woodlands in the valley, the nation’s largest watershed and a vital wildlife habitat.

As GreenTrees’ largest corporate partner, we are doing what we can to help revitalize the region’s economy while improving its environmental health.

Through our reforestation efforts we can significantly offset our CO2 emissions while creating a national environmental legacy.

1.1 million metric tons

Credits produced by Reforested Land

1.2 million tons

Carbon-offset Credits Generated

Living Shoreline

The Living Shoreline at Lambert’s Point in Norfolk, Virginia, is a critical marine terminal serving railroad operations. The nearby Elizabeth River shoreline had suffered significant and increasing rates of erosion, so, since late 2019, Norfolk Southern has partnered with the Elizabeth River Project, a conservation nonprofit, to develop a living shoreline to stabilize the area. A living shoreline is a more environmentally friendly alternative to a hardened concrete structure in combatting erosion.

One of the key elements of our shoreline restoration was using live oysters to clean and purify the river. In 2022, Norfolk Southern placed over 20,000 new oysters on site adjacent to the living shoreline. This oyster gardening project was completed in partnership with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and Elizabeth River Project, two local non-profit organizations.

The area now provides a habitat for fish, oysters, river otters, shore birds and other wildlife. Phase 2 of this project is set to kick off in 2024 with a plan to create a 4-acre offshore oyster reef in addition to other improvements. Norfolk Southern is also committed to establishing an annual monitoring plan to track overall project performance and to document any ongoing maintenance needs.