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University of Tennessee Publishes Reports on Barge Topics

Investigates effects of major lock closures on costs to shippers

The University of Tennessee at Knoxville (UT-K) recently published two reports related to grain shipments by barge.

Both reports were based on research sponsored through cooperative agreements with USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service.

One report investigated the effects of major lock closures on costs to shippers.

The study examined the capacity of alternative truck, rail, and barge routes to accommodate diverted grain in the event of these disruptions.

Results showed that a shutdown of the Lagrange Lock and Dam on the Illinois river could raise costs by over $265 million in a high-volume year, while a shutdown of Lock and Dam 25 on the Mississippi could raise costs up to $947 million.

The second report found that a loss of barge traffic to northern Alabama could shut down the poultry industry and remove 9% of the region’s economic output.

Information provided by USDA Grain Transportation Report.

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