A new rail freight terminal designed to take thousands of HGV journeys off the road has been launched in Perthshire.
Water firm Highland Spring said almost half of its stock dispatched from the bottling plant in Blackford, Perth and Kinross would now be sent to their main warehouse by train, saving thousands of tonnes of CO2 every year.
The ten-year development celebrated its milestone first journey on Wednesday after being officially opened by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
It is now hoped over 8,000 fewer road journeys will be undertaken by delivery trucks to take the product to the facility in Daventry.
“Environmental sustainability has been at the heart of our business for over 40 years, and the rail freight facility is a critical part of our commitment to tackling climate change and being a considerate neighbour to the local community,” the firm said.
“We believe this project is an excellent example of the power of partnership working between the rail industry, government and business which will provide wider benefits to the Scottish environment and economy.”
The development is the first of its kind in Scotland to open in ten years and was helped by a £4.47m Scottish Government fund.
The First Minister said: “Getting the Highland Spring rail freight facility to the point of opening and operating has been a complex task and everyone involved should be immensely proud of their achievements.
“Rail freight is intrinsic to the Scottish economy, it supports the supply chain and serves a broad range of sectors, and is good for society and our environment.
“Removing more than ten million lorry miles from Scotland’s roads in the first ten years of operation will go a long way to improving the environment and lives of those close by as well as helping the country as a whole achieve net zero. I am confident other businesses will now follow suit.”