Ohio Relies on Great Lakes-Seaway Shipping
Ohio’s shoreline stretches more than 300 miles on Lake Erie. Nearly 40 million tons of inbound and outbound cargoes are handled at Ohio's nine Great Lakes ports each year.
Great Lakes Seaway shipping is critical to the state's manufacturing, mining and agricultural sectors, which rely on efficient, cost effective waterborne transportation. For example, iron ore mined in Minnesota and the upper peninsula of Michigan is delivered by lake vessel to Cleveland and used as the key raw material in steel production. Similarly, ocean-going vessels bring semi-finished steel products such as coil, wire and slab from Europe, South America and Asia to Ohio's manufacturing centers in Cleveland and Toledo. Steel is used in Ohio construction projects, automobiles, appliances, machinery and everyday consumer products. Eastern coal mined in Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania, is loaded at Ohio's Lake Erie ports for delivery to power generation facilities throughout the Great Lakes region. Ohio farmers rely on the Great Lakes Seaway system to provide access to global markets. For example, ships load grain at the Port of Toledo for export to Europe, North Africa, the Mediterranean, and Asia.
Economic Impacts (In 2018 USD)
|Jobs||Personal Income||Business Revenue||Local Purchases||Total Taxes Paid|
|33,168||$2.2 billion||$2.7 billion||$1.41 billion||$838.7 million|
Investments (In 2013 USD)
|Invested in Ohio port, terminal and waterway infrastructure|
Ohio Port Activity
|Port||Annual Tonnage||Major Cargoes Handled|
|Ashtabula||4,954,000||Iron ore, coal, limestone|
|Cleveland||11,454,000||Iron ore, limestone, salt, cement, general cargo|
|Conneaut||4,771,000||Iron ore, limestone|
|Fairport Harbor||1,461,000||Limestone, sand, gravel|
|Lorain||761,000||Iron ore, limestone|
|Toledo||8,836,000||Iron ore, coal, limestone, grain, liquid bulk, general cargo|
(Source: Waterborne Commerce of the United States, Part III, USACE, CY 2013)
Economic Impacts of Maritime Shipping in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Region, Martin Associates (July 2018)
Infrastructure Investment Survey of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway System, Martin Associates (January 2015)
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