For all the grim articles about the state of trucking it’s nice to get some promising news. And here it is. The American Trucking Associations (ATA) is forecasting a 25.6 percentage bump in freight tonnage by the close of the next decade. The ATA made this public in their ATA Freight Transportation Forecast: 2019 to 2030.
In fact, the overall tonnage will increase up to 20.6 billion tons in 2030. That’s a rise from 2019’s predicted amount of 16.4 billion tons. Additionally, industry profits will jump 53.8 percent to around $1.601 trillion over the next decade.
Trucking’s portion of the whole freight tonnage will decrease to 68.8 percent in 2030 from 71.1 percent this current year. This fact is more noticeable when you consider that tonnage will grow to 14.2 billion in 2030 from its present 11.7 billion tons.
Over this time intermodal rail, air and domestic waterborne transportation will demonstrate incremental growth. Also pipeline transportation will increase dramatically (17.1 percent) in tonnage and 8.6 percent in revenue over the course of this next decade.
“America’s trucking industry, and the overall freight transportation industry, are poised to experience strong growth over the next decade as the country’s economy and population grow,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello.
Solving Trucking’s Problems
This positive freight forecast also highlights some of the trucking industry’s problems. With the increase in overall freight, it’s important that trucking solve infrastructure issues. Plus, they must find drivers to handle the load.
Currently the ATA is working to get a $0.20 per gallon increase in the federal excise tax on gasoline and diesel over the span of four years as a way to fill the highway fund for infrastructure. Furthermore, they are also trying to address the driver shortage by allowing 18 to 20-year-olds to become drivers.