By 2050, domestic freight moving into, out of and within the NJTPA region is expected to increase by 16 percent from an estimated 372 million tons in 2020, to 431 million tons. This includes energy sources (oil, natural gas, etc.), construction materials, food and beverages, consumer goods, and more. These goods move by truck, rail, pipeline, water and air.
The NJTPA recently completed the 2050 Freight Industry Level Forecasts Study, which provides a regionwide forecast as well as individual forecasts for each of the NJTPA’s 15 member subregions. These forecasts provide information on current and projected freight demand over the next 30 years and will help inform the NJTPA’s Long Range Transportation Plan update, which is underway. In addition, this study includes profiles of 12 commodity bundles.
New this year is an e-commerce commodity bundle, which was not included in the last round of profiles completed in 2015. About 88 million e-commerce packages containing 126 million items were delivered in the NJTPA region last year. E-commerce comprised about 11 percent of all retail sales in 2019. This could grow to as much as 47 percent by 2050. The growth of this sector and forecasted population growth could result in more than 390 million e-commerce packages being delivered in 2050.
The e-commerce commodity profile describes the movement of e-commerce shipments making their “last-mile” trip from a fulfillment center, retail store, parcel shipping center, or postal service facility to their ultimate destination. This profile is based on data acquired from Rakuten Intelligence and NJTPA’s Freight Forecasting Tool.
This study also compiled data on the following commodity bundles:
- Construction Materials
- Durable Goods
- Food and Beverage
- Machinery, Electronics and Transportation Equipment
- Paper and Printed Material
- Pharmaceutical Drugs
- Textiles and Apparel
- Warehouse and Terminal Moves
These commodity profiles, as well as profiles of the NJTPA region and 15 subregions are available at njtpa.org/2050FreightForecasts.