The Port of Mobile is a deep-water port in Mobile, Alabama, United States. It is the only deep-water port in Alabama. It was ranked by the United States Army Corps of Engineers as the 9th largest port by tonnage in the nation during 2008, with a trade volume of 67,635,501 tons. This ranking had decreased to 12th largest during 2010, with a trade volume of 55,713,273 tons.
The port is located along the Mobile River where it empties into Mobile Bay. The Port of Mobile has public, deepwater terminals with direct access to 1,500 miles of inland and intracoastal waterways serving the Great Lakes, the Ohio and Tennessee river valleys (via the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway), and the Gulf of Mexico. The Alabama State Port Authority owns and operates the public terminals at the Port of Mobile. The public terminals handle containerized, bulk, break bulk, roll-on/roll-off, and heavy lift cargoes. The port is also home to private bulk terminal operators. The container, general cargo and bulk facilities have immediate access to two interstate systems and five Class I railroads. Additionally, the CG Railway operates from the port as a rail ferry service to Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, in Mexico.
The Port of Mobile is the largest break bulk forest products port in the United States, and the Alabama State Port Authority's McDuffie Terminal is one of the largest coal terminals in the United States and largest import coal terminal. The port was the fourth largest exporter of coal during 2012, with the majority exported for metallurgical processes. The largest shares of coal exports from Mobile went to Europe and South America.
The Alabama State Port Authority announced in 2010 that $360 million would be spent over the following five years to improve infrastructure at the port. Improvements include land acquisition, new rail and inter-modal yards, cargo terminal improvements and enhancements to improve servicing of deep-water oil and gas field vessels and equipment Since 2000, the Port Authority has undergone nearly $500 million in capital improvements and expansion projects to serve containerized, bulk and break bulk commodities. Improvements include a new rail ferry terminal, a steel terminal to service the $4.6 billion steel facility in Calvert, Alabama, new warehousing, a new container terminal, and expansions at the McDuffie Coal Terminal. The Port of Mobile had an estimated statewide economic impact approaching $8 billion annually in 2010.