America's inland waterways move approximately 20 percent of the coal for utility plants, 22 percent of domestic petroleum products and over 50 percent of the nation's grain and oilseed. Manufacturers rely on our system of inland and coastal waterways to efficiently move freight. The viability of our nation's waterway system is seriously challenged by aging locks and decades-old infrastructure. These problems result in major delays that significantly raise costs and hamper the ability of manufacturers to grow their businesses and create jobs.
The NAM supports funding inland waterways at levels authorized by Congress and believes a 20-year capital plan should guide future investments and improve project delivery. We also advocate new financing approaches and a strengthened partnership between waterway users and the Army Corps of Engineers. A national focus on the nation's inland waterway system will ensure the viability of the waterways as a cost-effective and efficient means of moving goods.