Freight forecast shows increase in tonnage and revenue


Freight tonnage and revenues are expected to grow markedly between now and 2030, but trucking’s shares of both are expected to fall.

That’s part of the outlook included in the American Trucking Associations’  Freight Transportation Forecast: 2019 to 2030, an annual projection of the state of the freight economy released Wednesday, Aug. 21.

Among the findings in the forecast:

  • Overall freight tonnage will grow to 20.6 billion tons in 2030, up 25.6% from 2019’s projection of 16.4 billion tons
  • Freight industry revenues will increase 53.8% to $1.601 trillion over the next decade
  • Trucking’s share of total freight tonnage will drop to 68.8% in 2030 from 71.1% this year, even as tonnage grows to 14.2 billion tons in 2030 from 11.7 billion tons
  • Trucking and total rail transportation will lose relative market share, even as revenues and tonnage grows
  • Intermodal rail, air, and domestic waterborne transportation will show modest growth
  • Pipeline transportation will experience explosive growth –- surging 17.1% in tonnage and 8.6% in revenue over the 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. “Our annual Freight Forecast is a valuable look at where we are headed so leaders in business and government can make important decisions about investments and policy.”