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Great Lakes shipping was strong in 2020

Lake Carriers Association

Great Lakes shipping groups says business is finishing the year somewhat stronger after a down season during the pandemic. The shipping season got off to a rough start when the pandemic hit.

U.S. manufacturing screeched to a halt in the spring. That drove down demand for a crucial commodity.

Bruce Burrows is the President of the Maritime Chamber of Commerce.

"Demand for steel. And uh, we move a lot of iron ore and steel in our system and that remains down."

He says the story is a little different for each port depending on which commodities they focus on.

But American shipping companies in the Great Lakes region transport mostly iron ore and limestone.

Cargo totals for both are way down compared to last year. But the Lake Carriers Association says demand is picking up.