Iron ore shipments on the Great Lakes are up sharply, according to new data from the Lake Carriers' Association.
Last month just over 7 million tons of iron ore were shipped across the Great Lakes. That's an increase of 18 percent over a year ago, and above average for recent years.
"Since the recovery we've seen a gradual increase in iron ore, this year has been particularly strong," said Adolf Ojard, executive director of the Duluth Seaway Port Authority.
Ojard attributes the increase to strong global and domestic demand for steel. Minnesota's three ports on Lake Superior saw their iron ore loadings increase by nearly 13 percent over last year. The state lost 5 percentage points of market share compared to last year, but still accounts for more than seven of every 10 tons of ore shipped.