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Great Lakes Limestone Shipments Up 69% in April


Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reports that shipments of Great Lakes limestone totaled 2,114,432 net tons in April, an increase of 69% compared to a year ago. Loadings surpassed the month’s five-year average by 38%.

Loadings at U.S. ports totaled 1.8 million tons, an increase of 69%. Shipments from Canadian quarries totaled 289,737 tons, an increase of 64%.

Year-to-date the limestone trade stands at 2.4 million tons, an increase of nearly 60% from 2018. Shipments from U.S. ports total 2.1million tons, an increase of 60%. The year-to-date total for U.S. ports includes 54,046 tons shipped in March and 214,025 tons loaded in January.

No limestone moved from Canadian quarries during the first quarter, so the April total is also the year-to-date total for Canadian ports.

LCA represents 13 American companies that operate 46 U.S.-flag vessels on the Great Lakes and carry the raw materials that drive the nation’s economy: iron ore and fluxstone for the steel industry, aggregate and cement for the construction industry, coal for power generation, as well as salt, sand and grain.  

Collectively, its members can transport more than 90 million tons of dry-bulk cargo per year and employ more than 1,600 men and women, all of whom are U.S. citizens or legally admitted aliens, and provide annual wages and benefits of approximately $125 million. In turn, the cargos its members carry create and sustain nearly 116,000 jobs in the eight Great Lakes states and generate more than $20 billion in economic activity, $8.3 billion in personal income, $16.4 billion in business revenue, $4.1 billion in local purchases and $3.7 billion in taxes.