As intermodal connectors for domestic and international freight, our nation’s ports serve a critical role in numerous supply chains and the national economy. In recognition of this importance, the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act (P.L. 114-94; Dec. 4, 2015; 129 Stat. 1312) established a Port Performance Freight Statistics Program within the U.S. Department of Transportation: Bureau of Transportation Statistics. The first annual Port Performance Freight Statistics Program report provides descriptive statistics for a group of ports for year 2016, including the top 25 ports in terms of total tonnage, twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), and dry bulk tonnage. The report is available to download at https://www.rita.dot.gov/bts/sites/rita.dot.gov.bts/files/PPFS_Annual_Report.pdf
The 2016 Port Performance report used multiple sources, including public datasets featured on Data.Gov. One foundational dataset used in the report is the total commercial tonnage carried on waterways published by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Waterborne Commerce Statistics Center.