U.S.-flag Great Lakes carriers carried 10.5 million tons of dry-bulk cargo in August, an increase of more than 1 million tons, or 10.6 percent, compared to a year ago, according to the Lake Carriers’ Association.
The August float was also on par with month’s long-term average and slightly ahead of July’s 10.3 million-ton total.
U.S.-flag lakers moved 4.5 million tons of iron ore in August, 77.5 percent of all ore moving on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway that month. LCA said the 4.5 million tons represent a virtual repeat of a year ago, but a slight decrease compared to the month’s long-term average.
Coal shipments on these ships totaled 2.4 million tons in August, 76.4 percent of all coal moving on the Great Lakes that month. The 2.4 million tons represent an increase of 39.3 percent compared to a year ago, and are 80,000 tons better than the month’s long-term average.
The 3 million tons of limestone hauled by U.S.-flag lakers in August represent 81.3 percent of the Great Lakes trade in that commodity that month. This volume also represent increases of 8.7 and 2.8 percent compared to a year ago and the month’s long-term average.
Through August, the U.S.-flag float stands at 53.5 million tons, a decrease of 1.5 percent compared to a year ago. Iron ore cargos are down by 3.2 percent. Coal loadings are up 7 percent. Shipments of limestone are 4.6 percent off last year’s pace, LCA said.
The association represents 17 American companies which operate 57 U.S.-flag vessels on the Great Lakes. Collectively, these vessels can transport more than 115 million tons of cargo per year.