Coal shipping on the United States’ Great Lakes opened at a brisk pace in 2019.
According to Lake Carriers’ Association, which represents 13 American companies operating 46 US-flag vessels on the Great Lakes, coal shipments spiked to nearly 1.2mt (million tonnes) in April 2019, a monthly total that exceeded April 2018 by 61%. Year-to-date through April, the Lake Carriers’ total coal carriage on Lake Erie, Lake Michigan and Lake Superior stood at nearly 1.6mt, or approximately 12.4% ahead of the five-year average.
Specifically at the Port of Duluth-Superior, the Great Lakes’ top tonnage port, coal carriage was nearly 67% ahead of its 2018 pace through April, totalling more than 900,000 tonnes for the month and easily topping the million-tonne mark year-to-date.