A rare extension of the shipping season through the Soo Locks at Sault Saint Marie, Michigan is encountering the challenges of nature… but ships continue to plow their way from Lake Superior ports to the lower Great Lakes. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Mike Simonson has more:
A rare extension of the shipping season through the Soo Locks at Sault Saint Marie,
Michigan is encountering the challenges of nature, but ships continue to plow their
way from Lake Superior ports to the lower Great Lakes. Mike Simonson reports for
the Great Lakes Radio Consortium:
An unusually high demand for domestic iron ore from northern Minnesota and
western coal from Montana and Wyoming caused the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers
to keep the Soo Locks open an extra ten days. Weather permitting, they’ll try to
keep the locks open until January 25th.
Glen Nekvasil is with the Lake Carrier’s Association in Cleveland. He says this
won’t become an annual extension.
“This is a one-time request. The steel industry had a late surge in 2003, especially
seeing the tariffs on imports are gone, we just could not take a chance on letting that
momentum slip away because 2004 is a whole new ballpark for them. We got to start
out with every advantage we can.”
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Michigan Department of Environmental
Quality all had to agree to the extension, since they say plowing ice flows can cause
For the Great Lakes Radio Consortium, I’m Mike Simonson.