Washington - The U.S. Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (SLSDC) joined with the Canadian St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) to mark the opening of the Seaway’s 60th navigation season today. The official opening ceremony of the binational waterway took place in St. Catharines, Ontario, with Canadian Transport Deputy Minister Michael Keenan attending as honored guest and SLSMC President and CEO Terence Bowles and SLSDC Associate Administrator Thomas Lavigne addressing the gathering.
“The Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System is a key maritime corridor,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao. “We look forward to another successful year of moving commerce through this dependable and safe maritime transportation system.”
“As the 60th Seaway navigation season gets underway, we are proud to underscore the exceptional safety and reliability record of the binational waterway,” said SLSDC Deputy Administrator Craig H. Middlebrook. “State-of-the-art technology is transforming Seaway operations and allowing for gains in competitiveness. Cargo tonnage shipped through the Seaway was up 8 percent last year. We are optimistic that 2018 will be another strong year for Great Lakes-Seaway shipping.”
The season’s first ship to transit, the Algoma Niagara, is upbound into the Seaway System, on its way to Toledo, Ohio to pick up a load of metallurgical coal. Over 227,000 jobs and $35 billion in economic activity are supported by movement of various cargoes on the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System.