Port of Toronto reports increased cargo traffic in 2021

by Inside Logistics Online Staff

Imports of cement, steel, sugar and salt moving through the Port of Toronto surpassed 2.2 million tonnes in 2021 for the fifth consecutive year.

Overall, 190 cargo vessels visited the port in 2021, delivering a range of  bulk, project and general cargo products totalling 2,295,815 tonnes – a four percent increase from 2020.

The port estimates that the 2.2 million tonnes of cargo delivered by ship last year took approximately 57,000, 40-tonne trucks off Toronto’s congested roads and highways.

Construction materials

The port had a strong year moving construction materials including steel coils and rebar, cement and aggregate. In 2021, the port recorded cement cargo and steel imports reaching 19 and 18-year highs respectively, with more than 734,000 tonnes of cement and 185,000 tonnes of steel transiting through the port to construction sites throughout the Greater Toronto Area.

Aggregate tonnage more than doubled year-over-year, with 215,232 tonnes moving through the port to supply various land erosion projects led by the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority.

In addition to importing 572,683 tonnes of sugar from Central and South America, the port moved 583,425 tonnes of salt and saw 4,365 tonnes of container services tonnage – a 15 percent increase over 2020 for container services.

Supply chain resilience

“Shipping has a major role to play in ensuring the sustained resiliency of our national supply chain. In 2021, the Port of Toronto continued to provide a reliable trade gateway for the transportation of goods to the Greater Toronto Area, connecting Toronto to marine ports around the world while much of our transportation sector experienced delays,” said Geoffrey Wilson, CEO of PortsToronto.

“While the Port of Toronto will continue to play an essential role in our national supply chain in 2022, it will also play an important role supporting Toronto’s tourism sector as we anticipate hosting a record 37 cruise ships in 2022, including a number of new cruise ships designed for expedition cruising on the Great Lakes.”

In 2021, the Port of Toronto saw the arrival of three bridge spans from Nova Scotia via tug/barge for Waterfront Toronto’s Villiers Island project, and was critical in providing berthing for marine equipment working on the City of Toronto Ashbridge’s Bay Sewer Treatment Plant new outfall project.