Barge Traffic at Lewiston,
by Elaine Williams
Barges bound for Portland from the Port of Lewiston are getting fewer and farther between.
Container volume was off by 50 percent in February compared with the same month last year, when the numbers were still less than robust. "I was not happy," Port Manager David Doeringsfeld said.
Shippers of peas and lentils from the Palouse region continue to patronize the Port of Lewiston, but Lewiston's Clearwater Paper plant is not, Doeringsfeld said. Clearwater, Lewiston's largest private employer, previously used river barging for paperboard that is made into packaging for items such as cosmetics.
One issue is uncertainty about Hanjin, the company responsible for taking about 80 percent of the containers from the Port of Portland to their overseas destinations. Hanjin announced last year that it would no longer call on the Port of Portland but has continued its service.
The current availability is helpful but only to a point, because Hanjin could withdraw at any time, Doeringsfeld said.
Analysis Questions Economics of Barging by Eric Barker, Lewiston Tribune, 1/21/13
Electric Power Foregone to Lock Flush by Oregon Natural Resource Council, Restoring the Lower Snake River
Energy Intensities of Freight: Barge, Truck and Railroad US Department of Energy, Transportation Energy Data Book
Shipping Wheat: Truck or Barge? by Ken Casavant, Transportation Report 1995
Snake River Freight by Army Corps of Engineers, Government Report
Snake River Commodity Tonnage by Army Corps of Engineers, Data from 1990-2010
Lewiston Container Shipping by Port of Lewiston, Fact Sheet, 1997
Montana Grain on Lower Snake River by Montana Wheat & Barley, Data from 1985-2001
Snake River Barge Rates by Tidewater Barge Lines, Rate Schedule
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