National Maritime Day celebrates benefits of waterborne transportation


The following is text of a news release from the Chamber of Marine Commerce:

(OTTAWA) — The maritime industry is the lifeblood of United States trade, delivering goods throughout North America and around the world. National Maritime Day, Tuesday, May 22, recognizes the benefits the maritime industry provides in the U.S. and celebrates those who work on the water. Members of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway shipping industry are among those celebrating National Maritime Day.

The Chamber of Marine Commerce is honored to represent American and Canadian shippers, ports, terminals and marine service providers who work to keep domestic and international trade afloat. “National Maritime Day is an opportunity for all to take a moment to appreciate those who work in the marine industry, who protect our waters and deliver resources across the globe," said chamber President Bruce Burrows. "The Chamber of Marine Commerce is proud to work with these organizations and individuals every day.”

Great Lakes-Seaway ships deliver 164 million metric tons of materials every year for North American businesses. This cargo supports 130,000 jobs in the United States and the successful operations of the country’s mining, steel, manufacturing, agricultural, energy and construction sectors. But the benefits go far beyond economic security and job creation. Marine transport alleviates congested roadways, lowers the risk of accidents and reduces the country’s carbon and air emissions. Shipping is the safest mode of transportation, for both the public and individuals working in the industry. Shipping is about seven times more fuel-efficient than trucks and trains, and has the smallest carbon footprint. (Source: Environmental and Social Impacts of Marine Transport in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway region, Research and Traffic Group.)

In North America, marine transportation on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway provides $3.6 billion in annual transportation cost savings, compared to the all-land transportation alternative. This enhances the global competitiveness of North American products and industries and keeps the cost of consumer goods down.

The Port of Duluth-Superior is among those with National Maritime Day observances. The celebration at the University of Minnesota Duluth features a service of remembrance conducted by the Twin Ports Ministry of Seafarers. The event keynote speaker is William Doyle, CEO and executive director of the Dredging Contractors of America.

By Professional Mariner Staff