Robert HARNEIS -TDO- (FRANCE)- A record 23 million tons of cargo was shipped on the Northern Arctic Sea Route in the first 9 months of the year.
According to the Russian Federal Agency for Maritime and River Transport, a total of 22,98 million tons was shipped on the route in the period January-September 2020. That is 1,5 percent more than in the same period in 2019.
In 2017, a total of 10,7 million tons were transported on the route. In 2018, the volume was 20,18 million tons and to 31,5 million in 2019.
The total volume for 2020 is expected to exceed 32 million.
The head of Rosatom’s NSR Directorate Vyacheslav Ruksha, responsible for arctic traffic, has admitted that President Vladimir Putin’s 80 million tons target for 2024 will not be met until 2025. Rosatom believes that by 2030 a total of 110 million tons will be achieved.
The growth in Arctic shipments comes as sea-ice in the area is shrinking rapidly following unprecedented warming. The whole Northern Sea Route is now ice-free.
According to the Russian Hydrometeorology Center’s Marina Makarova, nearly every geographical region except southeast Russia experienced temperatures several degrees above their September averages.