The U.S. took a positive step toward increasing its engagement on Arctic shipping and transportation. Last week the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers submitted a plan to expand the Port of Nome, AK to allow the acceptance of larger ships. Expanding the port to a deep-water facility will allow the U.S. Coast Guard to more quickly respond to vessels in distress. Additionally, the deep-water port would provide a port in the region for larger vessels from the Coast Guard, and allow larger vessels to offload cargo directly at the dock as opposed to ferrying it to shore on smaller boats.
The move would provide additional infrastructure for public safety as well as opportunities for increased commerce for the city of Nome.
Nome would welcome expanded port facilities that could handle larger, deeper fuel tankers and possibly lower fuel prices, said Joy Baker, Nome’s port project manager. The city would also like to accommodate the Coast Guard fleet and vessels used for petroleum drilling