St. Lawrence Seaway cargo shipments steady in September

“Notable increases were reflected in the export of wheat, corn and soybeans from the U.S. ports of Duluth, Milwaukee and Toledo during the month of September, said Betty Sutton, Administrator of the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation. The good news is that we anticipate that trend to continue for the remaining three months of the 2016 navigation season.”

Also notable were shipments of aluminum and project cargo consisting of crane components, machinery and transformers.

In September, coal, liquids and general cargo shipments through the Port of Toledo surpassed year-to-date totals.

“Aluminum shipments led the way in the general cargo category up 27 percent over last season,” said Joseph Cappel, Vice President of Business Development for the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority. “While grain shipments slightly trailed totals from last year, wheat imports from Canada and corn exports are off to a good start moving into the fall harvest.”

For the second month in a row, the Port of Green Bay saw improvement in its year-over-year tonnage. Foreign imports of limestone increased in September 2016 compared to the same time frame in 2015.

“That’s a good trend to see and is reflective, in part, of the economy as well as the variable nature of shipping,” said Dean Haen, Brown County Port and Resource Recovery Director. “We are hopeful the trend will continue through the end of the shipping season.”

“Activity at the Port of Milwaukee continues at a brisk pace with both steel and grain volumes ahead of last year,” Port Director Paul Vornholt said. “We expect continued strength through the final quarter of the year.”

So far in 2016, steel is up 7 percent and grain has more than doubled for the Milwaukee port.

The Port of Oswego saw a rebound of aluminum shipments in September from Sept-Iles destined for the local Novelis plant.

“In addition to our aluminum shipments, the grain harvest is promising to be positive for the export of soybeans to Asia,” said Port CEO Zelko Kirincich.

The St. Lawrence Seaway reported that year-to-date cargo shipments for the period March 21 to September 30 were 21 million metric tons, down 5.32 percent over the same period in 2015. The dry bulk category was down 11 percent. Iron ore was down 13 percent; coal was down 15 percent. While the general cargo category was down 3 percent overall, steel slabs and other general cargo were up 41.5 percent and nearly 6 percent, respectively.

Maritime Editorial