The SCSC has noted that coal is the dominant commodity shipped from the U.S Great Lakes Ports followed by iron ore and coke/petcoke.
Some of this is exported and vessel operator CSL is currently providing a service transferring coal from Panamax self-unloading vessels to Capesize vessels in Chedabucto Bay, just adjacent to the Straight of Canso. The SCSC wants to tap into this business.
Speaking at the recent Highway H2O conference in Toronto organised by the St Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, SCSC CEO Tim Gilfoy said the Master Plan “suggests that the establishment of a dry bulk transhipment facility be considered and further analysed”.
The preliminary plan is that coal and iron ore be brought to the Straight of Canso by barge and Laker size vessels, stockpiled and then transloaded onto Capesize ships.
There are numerous sites in the Strait of Canso where such a facility could be built and Gilfoy invited ports along the Great Lakes and coal shippers to discuss the concept.