Author Topic: Where is Warren??  (Read 2374 times)


  • Bristles
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Re: Where is Warren??
« Reply #50 on: November 07, 2018, 12:20:29 PM »

Is rail transport going to look like the best freight option once there are fleets of autonomous electric semis available as an alternative?  Not so sure....

Isn't the advantage of rail relative to trucks that rail can carry heavier loads for a given energy expenditure?  That wouldn't change regardless of the trucks' autonomy level or power source, because it's related to vehicle size and the weight capacity of rail, isn't it?

Electric semis would be more ecological than gasoline ones, but wouldn't they still be less efficient than rail?

If electric were the key advantage, couldn't trains go electric?

Autonomous - couldn't trains become autonomous more easily than cars, if autonomy provides a significant advantage?

PS. Sorry if this sidetracks - haha! - from the Warren topic. Unsure if rail is great either, just asking based on prior (mis)"understanding" from other articles.


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: Where is Warren??
« Reply #51 on: November 07, 2018, 12:52:11 PM »
I think rail is supposed to be about 6x as energy efficient as hauling freight with an internal combustion engine powered vehicle.

A lot of (all?) modern locomotives are diesel/electric hybrids so that probably contributes in some part to that huge efficiency gap and having the trucking fleet go all electric might help them narrow that somewhat but my guess is that it wouldn't be enough to close the gap entirely.

But this is not at all my area of expertise, so other people please jump in if you know more.


  • Stubble
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Re: Where is Warren??
« Reply #52 on: November 07, 2018, 01:14:53 PM »
When you divide the tonnage by fuel consumed rail is the most cost effective way to move freight other than floating it down a river... It basically boils down to you can move one ton of freight 350 miles on one gallon of fuel on a train.


  • Walrus Stache
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Re: Where is Warren??
« Reply #53 on: November 07, 2018, 02:12:47 PM »

Berkshires train play isn't just about transport - its land.
you have any idea how much land goes with that purchase. and running alongside those tracks is thousands of miles of fiber-optic cable that forms the backbone of information transportation in this country. How much is being collected in payments from the right to have that cable there?


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: Where is Warren??
« Reply #54 on: Today at 09:19:48 AM »
The example of the public utilities having a lower p/e ratio is a poor one (I work for such a company):

Public utilities are expected to offset their lower growth with a dividend. BRK does not pay one.