The latest (2007) annual National Statistics on waterborne freight in the UK produced by the Department for Transport, according to the arrangements approved by the UK Statistics Authority, shows that:
• Traffic on UK domestic waters accounted for 5 per cent (126 million tonnes) of all goods lifted in the UK, and 20 per cent (51 billion tonne-kilometres) of all goods moved in 2007.
• Over the decade to 2007, goods lifted on UK waters fell by 11 per cent, and goods moved increased by 6 per cent, but there have been fluctuations during the period. In 2007, goods lifted on UK waters were at the same level as 2006 and goods moved fell by 2 per cent.
• Of the total goods moved on UK domestic waters in 2007, 68 per cent was traffic around the coast; 30 per cent was one-port traffic (to or from offshore installations, or dredged materials); and 3 per cent was inland waters traffic (including both non-seagoing traffic and seagoing traffic crossing into inland waters).
• Since 2000, when a more accurate distinction between coastwise and one-port traffic was introduced, coastwise traffic has fallen by 5 per cent. In 2007, coastwise traffic rose by 6 per cent compared with 2006.
• One-port traffic has fallen by 49 per cent since 2000. Traffic for 2007 was 18 per cent lower than in 2006.
• In the decade since 1997, goods moved on inland waters has fallen by 11 per cent. In 2007, however, this traffic increased by 4 per cent compared to 2006.
• Crude petroleum and petroleum products were the largest type of cargo moved, accounting for 72 per cent of all waterborne freight moved.
• The River Thames was the busiest of the major inland waterways, with 0.82 billion tonne-kilometres of goods moved (48 per cent of the inland waters total, and 1.6 per cent of all waterborne traffic). Traffic on the River Humber totalled 0.23 billion tonne-kilometres and the River Forth 0.17 billion tonne-kilometres.
Goods moved are measured in terms of tonne-kilometres, defined as tonnage lifted multiplied by distance travelled.
View the complete report on the Transport Statistics website at www.dft.gov.uk.
(Source: UK Department of Transport)