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According to the national academy of sciences 1 us

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Unformatted text preview: age -old idea: Transport freight by ship for as long as possible. The DOT is proposing designated shipping channels known as Marine Highways, and one may be leading to a port near you. If you’ve purchased any household goods in the United States recently, they probably took a familiar path from the factory to the store where you bought them: to North America on a massive cargo ship, from the ship to a railway, and finally from the rail yard to your local retailer by truck. In many cases, freight is carried solely by truck along interstate highways. Unfortunately, such a system is far from efficient. It clogs our highways with multiple trucks headed in the same direction and brings pollution into our cities near freight terminals. That’s why the Maritime Administration (MARAD) has proposed a system of marine highways where ships would transit goods within the United States. Along designated corridors, ships could provide safe, environmentally friendly and reasonably quick freight transit among a network of well-situated ports. [___] Marine Highway program being developed now Wired, 2010 (July 23, “DOT To Turn Underused Waterways Into Marine Highways,” http://www.wired.com/autopia/2010/07/dot-turns-underused-waterways-into-marine-highways/) According to MARAD Administrator Dave Matsuda, the United States is catching up with the rest of the world when it comes to marine highways. Also known as short sea shipping, coastal trade or coastal shipping, the rivers and seas of Europe and Asia are filled with small containe r vessels carrying cargo within a continent. “This is an idea that’s been around for awhile,” Matsuda said. “The Europeans do it, and other folks do it. For about 10 years now people have been kicking the idea around in the maritime community. It’s to the point that it’s been joked about that the Marine Highway conference has become a cottage industry.” When we caught up with him, Matsuda had just been sworn in as MARAD administrator. Earlier this month, he announced an initial $7 million (.pdf) in grant funding for marine-highway projects that would primarily strengthen existing projects and proposals. 2|Page Inland Waterways Negative BDL No Inherency [___] [___] Congress supporting maritime highways now US Department of Transportation, April 2011, America’s Marine Highway Report to Congress, http://www.marad.dot.gov/documents/MARAD_AMH_Report_to_Congress.pdf Other recent legislation from Congress that will foster growth of Marine Highway services includes the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010100 and the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2010. The former act authorizes a new Marine Highway Grants program; the latter act appropriates up to $7 million in funds to the new program for FY 2010. Additionally, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 created a discretionary grants program of $1.5 billion for surface transportation infrastructure. Port projects, including projects serving Marine Highway services, were eligible to c...
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