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Value to the Nation


Value to the Nation: Inland Navigation Fast Facts

VTN Fast Facts mapNavigation is USACE's earliest Civil Works mission, dating back to 1824 when Federal laws authorized and funded USACE to improve safety on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers and several ports. USACE provides safe, reliable, efficient, and environmentally sustainable waterborne transportation systems (channels, harbors, and waterways) for movement of commerce, national security needs, and recreation. Activities in the Civil Works Navigation Program include planning, designing, constructing, operating, maintaining, and further improving navigation channels, locks and dams.

The latest Inland Navigation Fast Facts data available is for 2020. Reports can be selected by national, project, USACE Division, or USACE District level.

Inland Navigation Fast Facts Reports

Select 2020 Inland Navigation Fast Facts Reports from the USACE Digital Library collections:

You can select an individual report, or go to a collection of reports. For a list of all reports in a collection, for example, in the project report collection, select "All Project Reports". 

How these numbers were calculated.

Inland Navigation Benefits in Perspective

For the purposes of the Value to the Nation effort, navigation infrastructure has been subdivided into three primary categories: Inland, Coastal, and Great Lakes. Inland infrastructure refers to activities related to channels located within the coastal boundaries of the US. Inland navigation infrastructure may include locks, dams, and related infrastructure. The USACE maintains 12,000 miles of inland and intracoastal waterways with 218 lock chambers at 176 sites. The system of barge navigation moves over 500 million tons of commodities annually, which includes coal, petroleum products, various other raw materials, food and farm products, chemicals, and manufactured goods.

The primary National Economic Development (NED) benefit of USACE inland navigation infrastructure is the reduction in the cost required to transport commodities compared to the next best alternative (rail transportation).