By the Numbers: Great Lakes Shipping

With the start of the shipping season, we take a look at the economic impact of Great Lakes shipping.


The number of U.S. flag vessel operators represented by the Lake Carriers’ Association, operating 49 self-propelled and tug/barge units ranging in length from 494 feet to 1,013.5 feet..


The number of ports in the eight Great Lakes states and Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec.


The year the St .Lawrence Seaway was completed, allowing “salties” into the Great Lakes.


The number of Great Lakes shipping industry jobs in the U.S. and Canada.

164 million

The number of metric tons of cargo delivered annually by Great Lakes vessels.

$4.6 billion

The amount of federal, state/province and local taxes generated annually by the industry.

$14 billion

The amount of wages generated annually by the Great Lakes shipping industry.

$35 billion

Annual revenue from Great Lakes shipping.

Source:  Chamber of Marine Commerce,,

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