Why is there no alternative to the Panama canal?

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The Panama Canal is essential to global trade, but a recent drought has left large numbers of ships waiting to pass along it, raising questions about whether an alternative route between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans is needed.

It is a traffic jam on a colossal scale. More than 200 ships, according to some estimates, float there, just waiting. Some are loaded with containers stuffed full of items including furniture, consumer goods or building materials. Some carry oil or gas. Others are transporting grain. They are all due to travel through one of the world’s most famous bottlenecks – a vital gateway for global shipping – the Panama Canal.

A highly unusual drought, right in the middle of Panama’s supposed wet season, has lowered water levels in two reservoirs that supply the canal. As a result, operators have had to restrict the size and number of ships that pass through its system of locks each day.

Read more at BBC.com

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Chuck comes from a lineage of journalism. He has written for some of the webs most popular news sites. He enjoys spending time outdoors, bull riding, and collecting old vinyl records. Roll Tide!