Houston Ranked Second in Nation in Maritime Jobs, Texas Ranked Third for Total Jobs

By Kyle Beam, GHPB

In the shadows of the San Jacinto Monument, and mere feet from the hallowed grounds of Battleground State Park, excitement was in the air at Kinder Morgan’s Bostco Storage and Terminal. The excitement was not for the upcoming celebrations of Texas’ 180th year of independence, but from a study conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) for the Transportation Institute and released by the American Maritime Partnership (AMP), announcing Houston ranks second in the United States, behind New Orleans, for maritime jobs.
The findings of the study were announced in a press conference at the facility attended by Congressman Brian Babin (R-TX), Congressman Randy Webber (R-TX), various Port of Houston Authority officials, Dr. Brenda Hellyer, Chancellor of San Jacinto College, and Capt. Robert Shearon, Presiding Officer of the Houston Pilots.

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Along with Houston’s ranking, Texas ranks third in the U.S. for maritime jobs with 39,190 maritime jobs in the state, generating $2.3 billion in worker income. The study found the domestic maritime industry – classified as those vessels which move cargo between American ports – produces $8 billion for the Texas economy.
Congressman Babin’s district, which covers the eastern side of Harris County, outside of Beltway 8, Chambers County, and communities such as Liberty, Jasper, and Orange, is home to the largest number of maritime jobs in the state. “With a district that is home to one of the largest ports in our nation, the PwC study reminds us how proud we are to not only be a major source of good-paying jobs for Texas but also a leading contributor to our state and national economy,” said Congressman Babin.

Congressman Randy Webber whose 14th district covers the southern half of the Houston Ship Channel as well as the ports of Freeport and Beaumont added “I’m proud to say that in my district alone, there are more than 2,500 family-wage jobs that contribute $674 million to the local economy, due in large part to the thousands of hard working men and women who are the true strength of the maritime industry.”

The congressmen were not the only people excited about the findings. Dr. Hellyer was also pleased because of her college’s commitment to the maritime industry with the opening of San Jacinto Colleges’ Maritime Technology and Training Center and knowledge her students will have ample opportunities to find work after completing their degrees. “The domestic maritime industry provides opportunities for students at San Jacinto College’s new Maritime Technology and Training Center to receive the critical skills necessary for careers on the water. Creating the workforce needed in this industry will help secure our nation’s maritime capabilities,” said Dr. Hellyer.

Captain Shearon added, “There has been phenomenal growth along the Houston Ship Channel over the last 5 years. The number of vessel transits and new waterfront facilities continue to increase – both indicators of the health and important economic impact of our Port. The Houston Pilots are proud of their work in support of making the Port of Houston safe and prosperous.”

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Along with the findings released by PwC, the AMP also reported a separate study released by the U.S. Maritime Administration on American shipbuilding. The study, covering both military and commercial ship construction, found Texas is the beneficiary of more than $2.3 billion in economic impact from shipyards, adding to the totals from the domestic maritime industry.

  • Date March 3, 2016
  • Tags March 2016