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Learn What You Can Do to Help Save the Soo Locks

One of the Detroit Regional Chamber’s 2018 Legislative Priorities is focused on increasing dedicated infrastructure funding. Arguably one of the most important pieces of infrastructure in Michigan, the Soo Locks in the Upper Peninsula, are in dire need of repair.

The locks are one of the world’s busiest waterway crossings, handling 75 million tons of commerce annually and saving the Great Lakes region $3.5 billion a year on transportation costs. If they were to fall into disrepair, there would be an immediate negative impact on Michigan’s economic stability.

Within weeks, a shutdown of the Soo Locks would halt 100 percent of North American automotive production, and within 30 days it would cause a $160 million economic impact.

In April, the Locks received national attention when President Trump declared his support for fixing the Soo Locks. This month, at the 2018 Mackinac Policy Conference, Gov. Rick Snyder announced a budget agreement to provide $50 million in state funding toward construction of a new lock.

The Chamber is calling on Southeast Michigan business leaders to get involved in this critical conversation. Here’s what you can do:

  1. Send an email to Gov. Snyder, your legislative leaders, and the White House.
  2. Join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #fixthesoolocks.
  3. Post any of the key facts on social media to raise statewide awareness of the Soo Locks’ importance.

Did you know?

  • More than 7,000 freighters cross through the Soo Locks each year, connecting the Great Lakes with the St. Lawrence Seaway. Just one freighter carries the cargo of 2,000 semi-trucks.
  • $500.4 billion of iron ore passes through the Soo Locks annually.
  • The Soo Locks rank first in economic significance (out of 196 locks).
  • A six-month shutdown of the Soo Locks would result in 11 million jobs lost nationwide.
  • The gross dometic product would decrease by $1.3 trillion as a result of the Soo Locks closing.

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