The Coast Guard Marine Safety Center issued the 12th US Coast Guard Ballast Water Management System Type Approval Certificate to Qingdao Headway Technology Co., Ltd. The treatment principle of the OceanGuard BWMS consists of filtration with electrolysis during uptake and neutralization during discharge. This approval covers models with maximum treatment rated capacities between 65 m3/h and 5,200 m3/h. This BWMS has not been shown to meet the requirements of 46 CFR Subchapters F and J, and may not be installed on a US flagged vessel.
On November 5, 2018, the United States fully re-imposed the sanctions on Iran that had been lifted or waived under the JCPOA. These are the toughest US sanctions ever imposed on Iran, and will target critical sectors of Iran’s economy, such as the energy, shipping and shipbuilding, and financial sectors. The United States is engaged in a campaign of maximum financial pressure on the Iranian regime and intends to enforce aggressively these sanctions that have come back into effect. The US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) posted to its website additional frequently asked questions (FAQs) that provide guidance on the sanctions that have been re-imposed. In addition, OFAC amended FAQ 256 and FAQ 417, and archived outdated FAQs. More than 700 individuals, entities, vessels and aircraft are now on the sanctions list, including major banks, oil exporters and shipping companies.
US CBP announced that beginning January 1, 2019 all commercial truck shipments containing Section 321 merchandise will be required to file an advance electronic manifest in accordance to the guidelines specified in the Trade Act of 2002. The rise in eCommerce combined with the increase in the De Minimis value, has resulted in a significant growth in shipments being manifested and released under Section 321. Beginning November 26, 2018, CBP will begin a phased approach for non-compliance with conveyances being referred to secondary for processing. Then starting January 1, 2019, carriers which make no attempt to comply with the electronic manifest requirement will be issued a monetary penalty ($5000 for the first offence and $10,000 for subsequent offences).
The Coast Guard published a Final Rule in the Federal Register that permits tankers with automatic pilot systems that meet certain international standards to operate using those systems in shipping safety fairways and traffic separation schemes specified in 33 CFR parts 166 and 167, respectively. This final rule removes the previous regulatory restriction, updates the technical requirements for automatic pilot systems, and promotes the Coast Guard’s maritime safety and stewardship missions by enhancing maritime safety. This final rule is effective Dec. 5, 2018.
The United States Coast Guard has issued a Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB number 00-12 REV1) to provide information and guidance regarding the provisions for employment of non-US credentialed personnel on board certain US documented vessels.
In the United States, results from the ILWU’s first contested election in 18 years have resulted with the certification of William Adams as president, Wesley Furtado as vice-president (Hawaii) Robert Olvera as vice-president (Hawaii) and Edwin Ferris as secretary-treasurer. Initial results were disputed over alleged discrepancies involving ballots cast by the Panama affiliate. A 2-month review process was completed on Tuesday when the international executive board certified the results. The existing ILWU contract was extended in 2017 for a further 5 years to July 1st, 2022.
The Marine Safety Center issued the 11th US Coast Guard Ballast Water Management System Type Approval Certificate to Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Ltd., after a detailed review of the manufacturer’s type approval application determined the system met the requirements. The treatment principle of the HiBallast BWMS consists of filtration with electrolysis during uptake and neutralization during discharge. This approval covers models with maximum treatment rated capacities between 75 m3/h and 10,000 m3/h.
The Coast Guard recently published a letter to the Coast Guard-accepted independent laboratories (ILs) providing guidance for evaluating manufacturer-identified operational limitations during type approval testing of ballast water management systems (BWMS). The letter clarifies the responsibilities of the BWMS manufacturer, the Coast Guard-accepted IL, and the Coast Guard, with regard to evaluating and assessing operational limitations of BWMS and including limiting conditions referenced in type approval certificates, and how to amend these conditions.
As US coal consumption declines, the US Department of the Interior is indicated that it is considering using military bases to accommodate export facilities for coal or natural gas. Six proposed coal ports in Washington and Oregon have been rejected or shelved due to worries about air and water pollution and rail safety, combined with changing market conditions. The department’s strategy is to use naval facilities on the west coast regardless of whether or not the states where the bases are located agree to it. Washington State governor, Jay Inslee, released a statement questioning the “harebrained” logic behind this move in view of Pentagon reports on climate change.
US Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Karl L. Schultz has released the Coast Guard's 40-paged document that outlines their "VISION for Enabling Maritime Commerce." The document establishes three lines of effort that are critical to the success of the Coast Guard: 1) facilitating lawful trade and travel on secure waterways; 2) modernizing aids to navigation and mariner information systems; and 3) transforming our workforce capacity and partnerships to meet the increasingly complex operating environment.
The Port of Long Beach will build and demonstrate a $7.1 million “microgrid” to show the promising new technology’s effectiveness in providing a clean, reliable supply of electricity for critical operations at the nation’s second-busiest seaport. With the help of a $5 million grant from the California Energy Commission, the Port will install a solar carport, power storage systems and advanced controls at its security headquarters, the Joint Command and Control Center. The goal of the California Energy Commission’s grant is to accelerate development of microgrids that can also improve participation in utilities’ demand response programs, where users agree to limit energy use during peak periods.
The US Coast Guard has summarized its latest presentation on the US ballast water management program in its blog dated 10/2/2018. The bulletin covers a summary of compliance options and what one can expect during a port state control exam.
California Governor Jerry Brown (D) has signed into law a bill that aims to hold retailers partly accountable for working with trucking companies that have a record of labour violations. The bill, SB 1402, makes retailers jointly liable for violations of state labour and employment laws when they hire trucking companies with unpaid final judgements for failure to pay truck driver wages, imposing unlawful expenses on employees, failure to remit payroll taxes or to provide worker’s compensation insurance, misclassifying employees as independent contractors, and other labour law violations.
Over the next year the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) will continue to address detention and demurrage practices, along with seeking further regulatory reform and regulatory priorities.Commissioner Rebecca Dye reported that there are six key questions that she will explore on the issues surrounding detention and demurrage and has set date for her first two field interviews:
A date for interviews in the Port of New York and New Jersey will be announced soon.
The US Coast Guard issued a news release providing an update on Hurricane Florence response efforts in North Carolina. To date, USCG air and surface crews have rescued 1,103 individuals and 419 pets. Working with local county partners, Coast Guard crews were able to help assess and clear 765 miles of road, assess 23 bridges, and 14 dams. The ports of Wilmington and Morehead City are open with restrictions as port reconstitution operations continue. Port assessments identified more than 100 aids-to-navigation discrepancies, 24 have been corrected.
The Port of San Diego has enrolled in Green Marine, North America’s largest voluntary environmental certification program for the maritime industry. Green Marine’s environmental program makes it possible for port authorities, terminal operators and ship owners to voluntarily reduce their environmental footprint through a comprehensive program that addresses key environmental issues that are common to most ports. The Port of San Diego established a Blue Economy Incubator in 2016 to foster sustainable aquaculture and pilot emerging blue technologies to deliver multiple benefits to the whole Port community such as fisheries enhancement, ecosystem restoration, water quality improvements, environmental monitoring, and education and outreach.
Thousands of members of the International Longshoremen’s Association, AFL-CIO at ports from Maine to Texas overwhelmingly approved a six-year master contract extension with United States Maritime Alliance (USMX) that will labour stability to ports in the East Coast and Gulf Coast through September 30, 2024. The newly ratified contract sets clear guidelines on what type of automation ports in the eastern half of the US can adopt, and procedures for labour protection when they do. Specifically, the contract prohibits fully automated terminals or equipment and demands port employers negotiate job-protection strategies with the local union before any machinery "devoid of human interaction" is deployed.