Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 5.6 million tons in April, a decrease of 9 percent compared to a year ago. However, loadings were 11 percent ahead of the month's 5-year average.
Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 4.9 million tons, a decrease of 9.5 percent compared to a year ago. The April total included 257,000 tons shipped to Quebec City for loading into oceangoing vessels and delivery overseas.
Shipments from Canadian ports totaled 700,000 tons. The decrease from a year ago – 36,000 tons – is the equivalent of approximately 1.3 cargos in a Seaway-sized laker.
Year-to-date, the Lakes ore trade stands at 10.8 million tons, a decrease of 10 percent compared to a year ago. Loadings are, however, up more than 13 percent compared to the 5-year average for the January-April timeframe.
Lake Carriers' Association represents 17 American companies that operate 57 U.S.-flag vessels on the Great Lakes and carry the raw materials that drive the nation's economy: iron ore and fluxstone for the steel industry, aggregate and cement for the construction industry, coal for power generation, as well as salt, sand and grain. Collectively, these vessels can transport more than 115 million tons of cargo per year.
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