St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. reports that year-to-date cargo shipments for the period March 22 to June 30 totaled 13.2 million metric tons, up 1.3% over the same period in 2011.
Iron ore and coal used in the steel and construction industries remained the dominant story in tonnage numbers along the St. Lawrence Seaway System. Iron ore shipments through the seaway rose 34% to 1.4 million metric tons in June. Year-to-date figures for iron ore were up 27% to 3.8 million metric tons.
Wind turbine components posted a 163% jump in June compared to the same month last year, notes St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp.
‘The seaway continues to show its global relevance as a vital marine route moving high- value wind components worldwide," says Rebecca Spruill, director of trade development for Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. ‘We anticipate that trend to continue, especially in light of the pending [production] tax credit deadline set to expire at the end of the year.’
According to St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp., the Port of Duluth, Minn., has become a strategic link in the global wind energy supply chain, shipping 60 wind turbine blades manufactured in North Dakota for export to Brazil.
‘This shipment is one of nearly 20 energy-related cargoes on the books for 2012,’ says Jonathan Lamb, vice president and general manager at Lake Superior Warehousing Co., the break-bulk terminal operator at the port. ‘Duluth has moved well over a million freight tons of wind turbine components from and to Europe and South America since the port first started handling wind turbines in 2005.’