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November Ore Shipments Up on Great Lakes

Iron ore shipments on the Great Lakes reached their highest level so far this year in November. The trade totaled 4.6 million net tons, an increase of 27 percent over the preceding month. The upturn reflects higher operating rates at the nation’s steel mills that, in turn, have required the sailing of some U.S.-Flag lakers that had been idled. The most recent reactivation was on November 25 when the American Republic returned to service. The vessel was designed specifically to shuttle iron ore on the twisting Cuyahoga River in Cleveland, Ohio. Comparisons with a year ago and the month’s five-year average illustrate the depth of this recession. November loadings were six percent off the pace of a year ago, and nearly 14 percent behind the month’s five-year average. For the year, the Great Lakes iron ore trade stands at 27.5 million tons, a decrease of 50.1 percent compared to a year ago. The decrease is only slightly less when compared to the trade’s five-year average for the January-November timeframe – 49.3 percent.


Great Lakes Iron Ore Trade Up 7% in November

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 5.5 million tons in November, an increase of 7% compared to a year ago.  The November ore float was also 4.1% ahead of the month’s five-year average, but trailed October by 7.7%. Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 4.9 million tons, an increase of almost 10% compared to a year ago.  The November total included 366,000 tons shipped to Québec City for loading into oceangoing vessels and delivery overseas


Great Lakes Ore Trade Down 11.3% in March

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 1.9 million tons in March, a decrease of 11.3% from a year ago. Loadings were 9.3% ahead of the month’s five-year average, however. Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 1.8 million tons, a decrease of 9.7% compared to a year ago. The March total included 116,000 tons shipped to Quebec City for loading into oceangoing vessels and delivery overseas. Shipments from Canadian ports totaled 113,000 tons


Great Lakes Iron Ore Trade Declines in July

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes totaled 6.4 million tons in July, an increase of 7% compared to June, but a drop of 8.2% compared to a year ago. Loadings also trailed the month’s long-term average by 6.5%. Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 5.7 million tons, a decrease of 5.2% compared to a year ago. The July total included 490,000 tons shipped to Québec City for loading into oceangoing vessels and delivery overseas. Year-to-date overseas exports total 1,550,000 tons


Maritime Community to Pay Tribute Oberstar

M/V Hon. James L. Oberstar (Photo courtesy The Interlake Steamship Company)

The Great Lakes Maritime community will honor Former Rep. James Oberstar on Thursday, May 8. All U.S.-flag vessels working the Great Lakes will lower their flags to half-mast in honor of Congressman Oberstar. Also on May 8, at almost the same time funeral services for Congressman James L. Oberstar are scheduled to get under way in Washington D.C., the U.S.-flag laker that bears his name is scheduled to arrive in the Port of Duluth-Superior to load iron ore pellets – a Great Lakes


Great Lakes: Less Ice Sees Ore Ships Thrive

Photo: Ben McClain

A relatively mild December on the Great Lakes allowed iron ore shipments to increase dramatically compared to a year ago when an early arriving winter blanketed the system with thick ice, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported. Shipments totaled 6.3 million tons, an increase of 23.6 percent compared to a year ago, LCA said, noting that the biggest increase came from U.S. ports on Lake Superior. Meanwhile, loadings out of Duluth, Minnesota, Superior, Wisconsin


Great Lakes Ore Trade Off 7 PCT in September

File Photo: Great Lakes Stone Carrier.

Iron ore shipments on the Great Lakes totaled 5.9 million tons in September, a decrease of 7.3 percent compared to August, and 7 percent below the level of a year ago.  Shipments were, however, 6.1 percent ahead of September’s 5-year average.   Shipments from U.S. ports totaled 5,052,532 tons, a decrease of 10.2 percent compared to a year ago.  Included in that total were 360,000 tons shipped to Québec City for final delivery overseas


Last Saltie Departs Duluth; Lakers Make Final Push

The Palmerton departing beneath Duluth’s Aerial Bridge on Dec. 20.  Photo Credit:  Paul Scinocca

Duluth-Superior’s international shipping season winds to a close as last saltie departs; Great Lakes freighters make final push to mid-January   This weekend signaled the ‘beginning of the end’ of the 2014 shipping season – as the last oceangoing vessel (saltie) to have called on the Port of Duluth-Superior this year departed just after midnight Friday – passing beneath the Aerial Lift Bridge at 12:26 a.m. Saturday morning.    


April Ice Weighs on US-flag Lakes Cargo

Icebreaker Great Lakes.jpg

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 6.7 million tons of dry-bulk cargo on the Great Lakes in April, a decrease of nearly 6 percent when compared to the month’s 5-year average.  Another brutal winter again spawned heavy ice formations Lakeswide that slowed the vessels that were put into service and delayed others’ sail date. With five of the six U.S. iron ore loading ports on Lake Superior, it follows that the iron ore trade was most affected by the ice fields


Steel Imports Take Toll on Lakes Ore in July

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway totaled 6.6 million tons in July, a decrease of 9 percent compared to a year ago, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported.   The decline reflects that steel imports continue to command more than 30 percent of the U.S. market, according to the LCA, who added it takes approximately 1.5 tons of iron ore (and roughly 400 pounds of fluxstone) to make a ton of steel in a blast furnace


Royal IHC and DIHAG Acquire Allard-Europe

Royal IHC and German company DIHAG Holding GmbH have jointly acquired the Belgian steel and iron foundry, Allard-Europe NV. IHC and DIHAG each take an equity stake of 40% and 60% respectively.   Through this acquisition, IHC is able to realize a reliable supply chain (competitive on


Weather Impacted Australia Iron Ore China Liftings

Shipments of iron ore to China from Port Hedland, Australia, which handles a fifth of the world's seaborne trade, fell 17.6 percent in January from the previous month after a tropical cyclone closed the port temporarily, port data showed.


US-flag Great Lakes Cargos Down in January

Source: LCA

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters carried 2.3 million tons of dry-bulk cargo on the Great Lakes in January, a decrease of 23 percent compared to a year ago, according to figures compiled by the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA).  Iron ore cargos decreased 20 percent


Australia Iron Ore Shipments to China Dip as Weather Shuts Port

File photo: Port of Port Hedland

Shipments of iron ore to China from Port Hedland, Australia, which handles a fifth of the world's seaborne trade, fell 17.6 percent in January from the previous month after a tropical cyclone closed the port temporarily, port data showed.  


Seven Ships Laid up at Duluth-Superior

The Port of Duluth-Superior said it will welcome seven ships for winter layup this year.   The firs tvessel Indiana Harbor laid up early on November 3 for a repowering project is already underway at Fraser Shipyards on the Herbert C. Jackson, in dry dock since early December.   


Baltic Index Slides Further as Demand Woes Continue

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying industrial commodities, touched a record low for the eighth straight session on Thursday, hurt by a persistent vessel glut and weaker global demand.  


USCG Begins Icebreaking in Western Great Lakes

Cutter Mackinaw (USCG file photo)

U.S. Coast Guard Sector Sault Ste Marie on Wednesday commenced Operation Taconite, an icebreaking mission launched in response to expanded ice growth in the commercial ports of western Lake Superior, Green Bay and the lower St. Marys River.   


Baltic Index Slump Continues on Demand Concerns

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying industrial commodities, touched a record low for the ninth straight session Friday, mostly due to vessel oversupply and lack of global demand.   The overall index


Baltic Index Tumbles Further Over Demand Worries

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, which tracks rates for ships carrying industrial commodities, continued its freefall to close at a record low on Tuesday amid concerns over vessel oversupply and global demand shortage.  


US-flag Lakes Cargo Volumes Lowest Since 2009

File Image (Photo: Rod Burdick)

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 87.2 million tons of cargo in 2015, a decrease of 3.3 percent compared to 2014, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) said. The end-year tally is the lowest since 2009 when the U.S.-flag float totaled 66.5 million tons.  


Michigan Governor Calls for 2nd Poe-sized Lock

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder (Official Portrait)

A second Poe-sized Lock is critical to the future of Michigan and the United States, declared Michigan Governor Rick Snyder in his State of the State address on January 19, and he pledged to work with Congress to build it, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported.


Brazil Orders Vale to Close Tubarão Iron Ore Port

Photo: Vale

A Brazilian federal court on Thursday ordered the suspension of activities at Vale SA's Port of Tubarão because of pollution concerns, halting the world's largest iron ore exporter's ability to ship more than a third of its output.  


Vale's Tubarao Port to be Reopened

Port of Tubarão in Brazil. Photo: Vale

 Brazilian mining company Vale SA may reopen its iron ore and coal port, Port of Tubarao, near Vitoria, reports Reuters.   Vale, the world's largest iron ore exporter, said the order came from Brazil's Federal Regional Tribunal.  


US, Canada Partner to Break Ice on Lower Great Lakes

Coast Guard Cutter Bristol Bay sits in the middle of Lake Erie as its crew takes ice liberty during a short break from ice breaking duties as part of Operation Coal Shovel, March 2015. The crew of the Bristol Bay, along with the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Griffon, escorted the motor vessel Algoma Hansa through a frozen Lake Erie. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Nick Gould)

 U.S. and Canadian Coast Guard icebreaking crews kick off operation Coal Shovel Friday in the waters of the southern Great Lakes.   Operation Coal Shovel encompasses domestic icebreaking operations in southern Lake Huron, Lake St. Clair, the St


Cyclone Stan churns towards Australia's NW Ports

Photo Port Hedland

A tropical cyclone gathered strength as it headed for the northwest coast of Western Australia on Saturday, forcing ports to close and mining companies to evacuate. Cyclone Stan, the first of a season which runs from November to April, was estimated to be 195 km (120 miles) north ofA tropical






 
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