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2020 Year in Review
The Port of Vancouver USA is reporting a record-breaking year in 2020, with the highest returns in its 108-year history: revenues totaling $50 million — a 15 percent increase from the previous year.
The port moved over 7 million metric tons of commodities, with energy infrastructure components leading the effort. Over 2,700 wind turbines crossed the docks of the port, the most of any West Coast port and enough to power 112,000 homes.
In 2020, the pandemic disrupted many businesses but the Port of Vancouver’s proficiency in bulk and break bulk cargoes allowed the port to leverage its best assets, including the ability to handle large-sized shipments, such as wind energy components. This advantage, along with extensive laydown space for storage, a highly-skilled work force and excellent transportation connections including river, rail and road, equipped the port to weather the economic disruption.
By diversifying commodities, the port is not reliant on any one industry and is able to have a continuous flow of business even during times of economic disruption. The port weathered the storm of COVID-19 in 2020 with its diverse tonnage and cargo mix, reflecting trends in the national and global market for materials essential to many industries and these are the materials that primarily make up the bulk of products that move through the Port of Vancouver.
In addition to wind energy components, the port moved over 5.4 million metric tons of grain, over 300,000 metric tons of copper concentrate and nearly 90,000 automobiles, with a record number of 3,350 autos received on a single vessel in October. Additionally, over 450,000 labor hours were recorded by local ILWU Longshore workers, whose wages added millions of dollars into the local economy.
Industrial occupancy remains high
Industrial occupancy at the port continues to exceed 99 percent. The port’s 50-plus tenants offer a wide range of products and services including metals and machinery, food processing, plastics moldings and electronics recycling. Tenant businesses employ thousands of people and contribute significantly to the local economy and tax base.
Environmental innovation continues
For the tenth year in a row, the port continued its commitment to renewable energy through the purchase of Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) equal to 100 percent of its purchased electricity. The port also continues its innovative stormwater management with biofiltration technology that enables the port to meet regulatory requirements to control zinc, oil and other runoff contaminants. Other efforts include floating treatment wetlands in the port’s Terminal 4 stormwater retention pond to assist in reducing copper and zinc.
The Terminal 1 Project is also continuing to move forward. Construction of the AC by Marriott is underway with the ground floor complete and work beginning on the second floor. The hotel is on schedule to open in the fall of 2022. Renovations of Vancouver Landing are also underway with seismic work completed and work proceeding on the overall renovations. The port continues to work with another private developer on the back blocks of Terminal 1 with plans for a mixed-use set of towers including residential, commercial office and retail space. The port hopes to have a lease with this developer sometime in 2021.