OSWEGO – Today (March 26), the U.S. Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation joined with the Canadian St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation to mark the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway’s 2019 navigation season.
2019 marks the 60th anniversary of the opening of the Seaway, the binational waterway connecting U.S. Great Lakes ports in North America’s heartland to global markets.
The interconnectivity of the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System allows for about 165 million metric tons of raw materials, agricultural commodities, and manufactured products to move each year, including iron ore for steel production, limestone and cement for construction, and grain for export and domestic consumption.
Movement of this commerce supports more than 237,000 jobs and $35 billion in economic activity.
Since 1959, nearly 3 billion tons of cargo with an estimated value of over $450 billion has moved through the St. Lawrence Seaway to and from Canada, the United States, and nearly 50 other nations.
In 2018, the St. Lawrence Seaway recorded its best shipping season in a decade, with a nearly 7 percent increase in tonnage over the 2017 season.
Gains were recorded in general cargo, including manufactured iron and steel, steel stabs, and containerized trade; dry and liquid bulk cargoes; and an exceptional 37 percent increase in shipments of U.S. grain exports.
The Port of Oswego Authority, the only port on Lake Ontario in New York State, posted a record year in grain exports with a 325 % increase over 2017.
Over all for 2018 the port posted a 42% increase in total shipments.
William W. Scriber, the port’s executive director said, “The Port of Oswego is showing strong growth and we expect to continue growth in 2019. We have several expansion projects on tap for 2019 that will increase our ability to grow our business here.”
Port of Oswego local impacts:
209 jobs in New York were supported by cargo moving via the marine terminals located at the Port of Oswego. Of the 209 jobs, 106 jobs were directly generated by the marine cargo and vessel activity at the marine terminals. In 2017, the direct business revenue received by the firms directly dependent upon the cargo handled at the marine terminals located at the Port of Oswego was $19.0 million. A total of $5.8 million in state and federal taxes were generated by cargo and vessel activity at the Port of Oswego, with $1.8 million generated at the state level and $4.0 million generated at the federal level.