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Final Report Phase II Elasticity Study

Final Report Phase II Elasticity Study

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Published by Eric Kirkendall
A long-run elasticity study for the San Pedro Bay Ports was published in 2005. In 2006, a study was begun to update the earlier analysis using a great deal more data. Compared to the 2005 analysis, the elasticity of imports via SPB to potential container fees increased markedly due to unfavorable changes in rail intermodal rates and dray costs. Elasticity of imports to potential fees at SPB is a function of factors not under the region’s control. Major infrastructure improvements funded by bonds which are retired by container fees implemented only after the improvements are complete can be a value proposition for large nation-wide importers practicing trans-load import strategies, but may be a negative value proposition for small importers and those importing low-value goods. The Short-Run and Long-Run Elasticity Models show much promise for interesting policy analysis and infrastructure planning but having much more data would refine them. The Phase II results provide a cautionary lesson that elasticity of imports can change markedly in the span of only several years.
Supplemental Notes:
The preparation of this report was financed in part through grants from the United States Department of Transportation (DOT).
A long-run elasticity study for the San Pedro Bay Ports was published in 2005. In 2006, a study was begun to update the earlier analysis using a great deal more data. Compared to the 2005 analysis, the elasticity of imports via SPB to potential container fees increased markedly due to unfavorable changes in rail intermodal rates and dray costs. Elasticity of imports to potential fees at SPB is a function of factors not under the region’s control. Major infrastructure improvements funded by bonds which are retired by container fees implemented only after the improvements are complete can be a value proposition for large nation-wide importers practicing trans-load import strategies, but may be a negative value proposition for small importers and those importing low-value goods. The Short-Run and Long-Run Elasticity Models show much promise for interesting policy analysis and infrastructure planning but having much more data would refine them. The Phase II results provide a cautionary lesson that elasticity of imports can change markedly in the span of only several years.
Supplemental Notes:
The preparation of this report was financed in part through grants from the United States Department of Transportation (DOT).

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Published by: Eric Kirkendall on Jun 08, 2012
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 1
Final Report –Port and Modal Elasticity Study, Phase II
Robert C. Leachman
Leachman & Associates LLC 245 Estates Drive Piedmont, CA 94611leachman@LeachmanandAssociates.com  
For
September 7, 2010
Funding: The preparation of this report was financed in part through grants fromthe United States Department of Transportation (DOT).
 
 2
Table of Contents 
Page
List of Tables ...................................................................................................................4
 
List of Figures ..................................................................................................................5
 
Executive Summary ............................................................................................................ 7
 
1. Overview ....................................................................................................................... 16
 
2. Outreach to Stakeholders .............................................................................................. 30
 
2.1. Feedback from Stakeholders – Elasticity Studies ...................................................30
 
2.2. Feedback from Stakeholders – Capacity Study ......................................................33
 
3. Port and Modal Shares of Imports ................................................................................ 37
 
3.1. Port Shares of Containerized Trade Volumes ........................................................37
 
3.2. Landside Channel Shares of Waterborne Containerized Imports ...........................40
 
4. Distribution of Imports by Commodity and Value ....................................................... 44
 
5. Transportation Charges ................................................................................................. 50
 
5.1. Alternative Ports of Entry .......................................................................................50
 
5.2. Destinations ............................................................................................................52
 
5.3. Transportation Modes .............................................................................................53
 
5.4. Components of Transportation Costs .....................................................................55
 
5.5. Transportation Unit Costs .......................................................................................56
 
5.6. Domestic Equipment Availability ..........................................................................61
 
6. Impacts of Port Contracts and of Carrier and Terminal Operating Strategies .............. 63
 
6.1. Port Contracts .........................................................................................................63
 
6.2. Contracts Between Steamship Lines and Railroads ...............................................65
 
6.3. Contracts Between Importers and Steamship Lines ...............................................66
 
6.4. Carrier and Terminal Operating Strategies .............................................................66
 
7. Congestion Analysis ..................................................................................................... 70
 
7.1. Background on Queuing Theory ............................................................................70
 
7.2. Port Terminal Congestion Modeling ......................................................................72
 
7.3. Rail Terminal Congestion Modeling ......................................................................76
 
7.4. Rail Line-Haul Congestion Modeling ....................................................................79
 
8. The Short-Run Elasticity Model ................................................................................... 88
 
8.1. Overview of the Short-Run Elasticity Model .........................................................88
 
8.2. Input Data ...............................................................................................................95
 
8.3. Output Data .............................................................................................................97
 
8.4. The Short-Run Model: Iteration of Supply Chain Optimization and QueuingModel Calculations ........................................................................................................99
 
8.5. Application of the Short-Run and Long-Run Models ..........................................100
 
8.6. Conclusions ...........................................................................................................113
 
9. Glossary ...................................................................................................................... 115
 
10. References ................................................................................................................. 121
 
Appendix A. Resume of Stakeholder Meetings .............................................................. 122
 
Appendix B. Asian Origin Countries for Imports Included in the Study ....................... 123
 
 
 3Appendix C. Rail Line Configuration Data .................................................................... 124
 
Note: The contents of this report reflect the views of the author who is responsiblefor the facts and accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do notnecessarily reflect the official views or policies of SCAG, DOT or any organizationcontributing data in support of the study. This report does not constitute astandard, specification or regulation.

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