Western Canada Marine Response Corporation recently completed a process to standardize its vessel names and design with new distinct paint schemes of orange, blue and white. Orange was chosen to match the colour of the boom we typically deploy, while blue and white are the core colours of WCMRC's brand identity. All vessels in the response fleet will now contain the word “Sentinel” in their names to reflect the role WCMRC plays in protecting B.C.’s coast from the effects of oil and other marine spills.
The three members of the Ocean Network Express (ONE) have announced that their joint venture has now received all the regulatory approvals that it needs. The South African Competition Commission had originally rejected the merger for fear it would strengthen market coordination for liner shipping, car transportation and bulk shipping, has now granted approval with conditions requiring measures regarding competition law compliance. The companies involved in the joint venture are Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd., Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd., and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha. ONE will be the sixth largest containerline in the world and will be headquartered out Singapore.
The Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway System issued a news release announcing a toll rate increase of 1% for the 2018 navigation season. The New Business Incentive and the Gateway Incentive programs will continue for the 2018 season as it has proven to be an attractive incentive for new business. However, the recent ice-locked Federal Biscay has some urging that the seaway shipping season be shortened. On that matter, Davie Shipyards has offered to loan four icebreakers currently located in Europe and Florida and is expected to commence negotiations with the Canadian Coast Guard today.
The Canadian Coast Guard will be seeking proposals to remove all "recoverable oil" from the Manolis L shipwreck on Newfoundland's northeast coast. The environmental impact of the Liberian-flagged Manolis L that sank in 1985 has been monitored routinely and annual maintainance has helped contain leaks from the damaged hull. The government plans to award the contract by spring of 2018 with operations commencing in summer 2018 to remove most of the estimated 115,000 to 150,000 litres of oil that remains onboard.
Government of Canada will invest $700 million through the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) over the next five years to grow Canada’s clean technology industry, protect the environment and create jobs. The investment will enable the BDC to take on more risk to help high-potential clean tech firms expand by providing them with the capital they need to hire new staff, develop products, support sales, and scale up and compete globally.
The Federal Maritime Commission has concluded two days of hearings to examine issues issues related to detention, demurrage, and per diem practices of marine terminal operators and container ship lines. Acting Chairman Michael A. Khouri said the Commission will meet in closed session to discuss next steps soon after the hearing record is closed. Further information may be submitted for the record through Friday, January 26, 2018. In total, 26 different individuals testified on seven different panels during the hearings. The hearings were livestreamed and are available to view now on YouTube.
China's first 20,000 TEU container vessel COSCO Shipping Aries is undergoing sea trials at the Port of Nantong after a naming ceremony on Tuesday. She is also the first container ship to receive Lloyd Register’s Cyber-enabled ship (CES) certification note Cyber AL3 SECURE PERFORM for its energy management system. . Cyber-enabled systems are considered to be systems installed on board ships that would conventionally be controlled by the ship’s crew but which, through recent advances in IT, now include the capability to be monitored or controlled, either remotely or autonomously.
The sunken Iranian tanker, Sanchi, off China’s east coast has created four oil slicks covering a total area of almost 101 square kilometres after colliding with the bulk carrier CF Crystal. Sadly the bodies of only three of the 30 Iranian and two Bangladeshi crew members have been recovered. The disaster is ranked as the sixth largest spill ever and the largest withni the last 27 years. The Suezmax was carrying 136,000 tonnes of natural gas condensate and the incident has reminded us all that despite improvements over the last several decades, there is always room for improvement. The Sanchi is now lying under 115 metres of water in the East China Sea, about 530 kilometres southeast of Shanghai.
The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA), has sent Port of Cleveland President and CEO William Friedman to testify for a fund of US$ 66 billion over the next decade for America’s public ports. Friedman presented his case before the US Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) in a hearing titled ‘America’s Water Infrastructure Needs and Challenges’. His testimony, which has focused on issues related to navigation infrastructure maintenance, rehabilitation and replacement, is to help committee members better understand and appreciate some of the critical infrastructure issues faced by US ports. Seaport cargo activity accounts for 26 percent of US GDP, over 23 million American jobs, and generates over $320 billion annually in federal, state and local tax revenues.
Amendments to the regulation for the prevention of pollution by garbage from ships, known as MARPOL Annex V, will enter into force on March 1, 2018. The amendments, adopted at MEPC 70, include criteria for determining whether cargo residues are harmful to the marine environment, and a new Garbage Record Book format with a new garbage category for e-waste. Solid bulk cargo as per regulation VI/1-1.2 of SOLAS, other than grain, shall now be classified per the criteria in the new appendix I of MARPOL Annex V, and the shipper shall then declare as to whether or not the cargo is harmful to the environment (HME). Additionally, the new form of the Garbage Record Book will be divided into two parts, Part I for all garbage other than cargo residues, applicable to all ships, and Part II for cargo residues only applicable to ships carrying solid bulk cargo.
The Suez Canal Authority has extended the discount offered to dry bulk vessels back in April 2017 until the end of 2018. Specifically, a 75 percent rebate of the canal transit tolls is being offered to laden or ballast dry bulk vessels coming or heading to ports at South West, South and East of Australia. The extension also relates to dry bulk vessels coming from the Republic of South Africa ports and heading to the ports in the Mediterranean Sea. The discount is being offered as the canal authority works to attract more ships to transit the waterway.
More than 100 MPs and senators have signed a letter to Finance Minister Bill Morneau asking $1.4 billion to be included in the federal budget for an expansion of Canada's protected land and marine areas to be financed over three years. The letter drafted by Quebec Liberal MP William Amos, a former environmental lawyer, says the money is needed for development of national parks and for protected areas being created by Indigenous groups, provinces, territories, municipalities and private interests. According to recent reports, just more than 10 per cent of Canada's land is currently protected. The letter's 115 signatories include Liberal MPs and senators, New Democrat MPs and a Conservative senator. It asks for an initial investment of $1.4-billion over the next three years and then $470-million annually to pay for the enhancement of protected areas. On October 28th 2017, the federal government announced that canada had achieved its interim target of 5 percent protection of marine and coastal areas.
A string of calming comments from U.S. President Donald Trump about NAFTA has supportors of the agreement breathing a little easier now that he appears to be softening his stance. Some of the comments made to the Wall Street Journal include: "We're moving along nicely," "There's no rush," "I'm leaving it a little flexible," "We have a chance of making a reasonable deal," "We've made a lot of headway." Trump said the benefits of a new NAFTA would pay for his proposed border wall with Mexico, while expressing understanding that it's tough for Mexico to negotiate during its election. Although he continues to repeat his threat to cancel the agreement if he can't get a better deal. Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said at a Liberal cabinet retreat in London, Ont., that Trump's newfound patience on NAFTA re-negotiations is "sensible" and "constructive."
The Iranian tanker, Sanchi, has been ablaze since it collided with Hong-Kong registered freight ship CF Crystal on the evening of January 13th, 185 miles off China's coast near Shanghai. Since the crash, the tanker has been billowing thick plumes of black smoke. Sanchi was carrying almost one million barrels of highly flammable crude oil to South Korea with 32 crew members on board - 30 Iranians and two Bangladeshis. All are missing, but the body of a mariner suspected to be from the ship was recovered on Monday. The 21 Chinese crew members on the CF Crystal, carrying grain from the US, were rescued. Ten foot waves and strong winds, along with toxic fumes from the burning oil, have also been hindering the efforts to extinguish the fire.
Cargo moving through the Port of Prince Rupert rose to a record volume of 24.1 million tonnes in 2017, anchored by 26% growth in its intermodal container business and growth of dry bulk cargo volumes. Overall tonnage through the port was up 28% from 2016, and exceeds the previous record high of 23 million tonnes set in 2013.
2017 Terminal highlights include:
Transport Canada has introduced new Arctic Shipping Safety and Pollution Prevention Regulations. The regulations incorporate the International Code for Ships Operating in Polar Waters (the Polar Code) into Canada’s domestic legislation.
The Polar Code addresses the unique hazards encountered by certain vessels that operate in the Arctic and Antarctic. The Polar Code and Canada’s new regulations include a variety of safety and pollution prevention measures, including those related to vessel design and equipment, vessel operations and crew training. Drawing from decades of experience as an Arctic regulator, Canada played a key leadership role in developing the Polar Code at the International Maritime Organization.
On January 11th 2018 Transport Minister Marc Garneau announced that the temporary mandatory slowdown for vessels that had been in place since August 11th 2017 in the Gulf of St. Lawrence had been lifted. There have been no sightings of the North Atlantic right whales in the area of the slow-down in recent weeks. The temporary mandatory slow-down was implemented after the unprecedented deaths of 12 right whales during the summer of 2017, some of which were determined to be as a result of ship strikes. Transport Canada issued 13 penalties to vessels for alleged non-compliance during the temporary mandatory slowdown period. The global population of the North Atlantic right whale is approximately 450.