STOCKTON — The Port of Stockton had its second-best year ever in 2016, moving nearly 3.9 million tons of cargo.
The port’s daily vessel log showed three ships in port Monday and another 15 due in by the end of January.
“Things look good. This port is an exciting port,” port Director Richard Aschieris said Friday. “That shipping schedule, looking like that. It wasn’t that long ago you’d see for the whole month maybe six, seven ships.”
The commodities that kept the port the busiest in 2016 were coal, cement, sulfur, steel, liquid fertilizer and molasses.
Corn and soy saw the greatest increase in tonnage at 179.9 percent from 2015 to 2016. Project cargo was down the most, year over year, down 73.8 percent.
The port’s biggest year was 2014 when more than 4.1 million tons of cargo moved through. That year, 230 ships and 36 barges called at the port.
In 2016, more ships called — 232 — but slightly less tonnage moved through the port.
There’s been significant increase in activity at the port in the past five years. In 2011, the port moved a little less than 2.8 million tons of cargo and saw just 176 ships.
In 2015, Union Pacific opened its rail welding facility where sections of rail are received from Japan and welded into 1,440-foot sections.