An Associated Press analysis of railroad data shows that the number of rail lines in various states is shrinking.
In some cases, rail lines are being eliminated altogether.
Key points: The numbers show that the rail industry is shrinking, and many are being removed at an alarming rate: The number of railroad lines in the U.S. has dropped from more than 2.3 million in 1950 to about 2.1 million today.
In all, there are fewer than 1.3 billion miles of track in the country.
More than 1 million miles of existing rail lines were replaced last year.
The rail industry accounts for nearly half of all freight movement in the United States.
The rest is by air, truck, ferry, train and sea.
The industry is struggling to stay competitive as more of the nation’s infrastructure is being built and new routes are being built.
Railroads have been at the center of debates about how to handle the impact of climate change.
The federal government has pledged to reduce carbon emissions, but has not made any concrete commitments on how it will do so.