Barge transportation is the most fuel efficient method of moving the raw materials and semi-finished products needed by the nation's economy. This study reviews the record of extensive research on this vital issue and provides a finding that lends new perspective to energy efficiency in transportation. A number of studies of fuel efficiency have been sponsored over the past several years by the Department of Transportation and the Department of Energy. These studies show that shallow-draft water transportation consumes considerably less energy in producing equivalent freight transportation than alternative modes. Even when circuity (the lack of straight-line water routes between cities) is taken into account, the energy efficiency of the barge and towing industry is superior. These analytical findings are confirmed by a survey of barge operators and reinforced by specific examples--of grain movements from Minneapolis to the Gulf Coast, and of coal movements covering 25 million tons to steam generating plants of the Tennessee Valley Authority. All bulk transport modes make significant contributions to the nation's distribution system in a highly fuel-efficient manner. Any transportation energy policy must recognize and promote the utilization of the inherent advantages of all of the fuel-efficient modes of transportation.

  • Corporate Authors:

    American Waterways Operators, Incorporated

    1600 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 1101
    Arlington, VA  United States  22209
  • Authors:
    • Eastman, S E
  • Publication Date: 1980-6

Media Info

  • Pagination: 17 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00325798
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 12 1981 12:00AM