Sunday, July 14, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Monday, October 5, 2015
“Time to repeal the Jones Act”
By Michael Hansen @ 4:15 AM :: 4268 Views :: Jones Act

by Michael Hansen, Hawaii Shippers Council, October 2, 2015

The Hill newspaper posted an op-ed on October 2, 2015, to their blog page from Joshua Sharp entitled “Time to repeal the Jones Act.”

The author is a student at West Virginia University studying for a major in economics and minors in math and political science. He recently published the results of his research on the Puerto Rico Power Authority (PREPA).

Key excerpts:

According to a 2014 report by the Congressional Research Service, the cost of an American medium range product tanker is over three times the worldwide price of the same vessel. Even worse, the operating cost for American flagged vessels is almost 2.7 times more than their foreign flagged competitors. This increases the cost of expanding the supply of vessels in the market, creating an inability to meet demand, and ultimately a higher cost of transportation.

The same report found that the cost of transporting crude oil from the Gulf Coast to the American northeast is almost triple the cost of transporting the same oil to eastern Canada, with an additional cost of approximately $5 to $6 per barrel.

The northeast imports oil from a wide variety of countries, including Canada, Saudi Arabia, and Nigeria, all at a lower cost than the Gulf Coast. Even though the law intended to protect domestic commerce, it has resulted in an increased reliance on foreign oil.

The contiguous states are negatively affected by the law, but the islands receive the worst of it. Unlike the contiguous states, the islands are distant from their mainland partners. This increases the cost of transporting goods from one port to another. As a result the cost of electricity per kilowatt in the noncontiguous states is almost three times that of the mainland states. Islands such as Hawaii and Puerto Rico import most of their fuel sources.

Far from increasing commerce, the limitations on supply and increased costs of transportation have disrupted foreign and domestic trade. This leaves national security as the sole remaining justification for the law. But the United States Navy is now the largest and most technologically advanced in the world, so our waterways are already protected from hostile threats. And it’s unclear how security would be increased by having vessels owned or built by Americans.

The Government Accountability Office’s analysis of a 1995 report by the International Trade Commission found that removing the barriers to domestic shipping could increase gross domestic product by $2.8 to $9.8 billion annually. A report by Justin Lewis of Tulane University also found that eliminating these regulations would reduce the cost of coastal transportation by 61%.

Though the intentions were noble, the law has wreaked havoc on American commerce. As the law nears its one-hundredth anniversary, Congress should bring a peaceful end to an era of protectionism. Congress should repeal the Jones Act.


TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


Aloha Pregnancy Care Center


Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together


Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii