The port of Duluth-Superior supports almost 8,000 jobs and brings in $1.4 billion annually, according to a recent study.
Local details released Friday from a broader study sponsored by the Great Lakes-Seaway emphasized the local economic impact of the port in 2017.
"As the largest tonnage port on the Great Lakes, we have long known the key role this port plays in the economic vitality of the entire region," said Deb DeLuca, executive director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority said in a news release. "Not only does this study validate that message, it also provides relevant data to share with policymakers, investors, business leaders and residents alike illustrating how indispensable our working waterfront is to job growth and economic sustainability in northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin."
The local study also shows the port of Duluth-Superior handles 35 million short tons of cargo, leads to $504 million in wages and results in about $240 million in federal and state tax revenue.
Earlier this year, a companion study sponsored by the Great Lakes Seaway Partnership showed the Great Lakes supports almost 238,000 jobs between the United States and Canada and brings in $35 billion annually.
Across the Great Lakes in 2017, 143.5 million metric tons of cargo (valued at $15.2 billion) were moved, but grew to 230.9 million (and $45.6 billion) when ocean-going trade through the St. Lawrence Seaway was factored in. Additionally, the Great Lakes seaway industry generated $6.6 billion in taxes for the federal, state/provincial and local governments of U.S. and Canada.
In the port of Duluth-Superior, 35 million tons of cargo moves through the port each year, over 18 million tons of which is iron ore.
"We do the heavy lifting here in the Twin Ports in terms of tonnage," Jason Serck, City of Superior economic development, planning and port director, said in the news release. "When you look at the number of jobs in this area related to maritime commerce, it is clear that the working waterfront drives the economies of this entire region."