German Canals May Open This Week, Allowing Oil, Coal Shipments.
Canals in northeast Germany used to ship products including diesel and coal may open this week as temperatures rise. ?We expect the Elbe-Seiten canal to open in the next week,? Reinhold Frank, an official at the Hanover shipping office, said today by phone. The Elbe-Seiten canal is the main canal link going south from the port of Hamburg.
Canals all over Germany closed this winter as temperatures dropped to the lowest in about fifteen years. More than 37 million metric tons of crude and oil products were shipped through the country"s rivers and canals in 2008, according to the inland shipping association.
The Mittelland canal, a major east-west link, is also expected to open next week if temperatures stay above freezing, Frank said. Parts of that canal can already be used, he said.