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A pair of crane operators at the Port of Long Beach have set a new productivity record for moving the most cargo using a single crane during one eight-hour shift. The record was set on May 15 when two crane operators working the containership Gudrun Maersk at Total Terminals International’s Pier T terminal moved a total of 564 containers using a single crane over just an eight-hour period. This represents an average of 70 container moves per hour, which is nearly triple the West Coast average of 25 container moves per hour.  The new record breaks the previous American record of 534 container moves set in 2014, also at the Port of Long Beach. Over the four-day call, more than 9,300 total containers were discharged and loaded on the 11,000 TEU capacity Gudrun Maersk.

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The Minister of Transport, the Honourable Marc Garneau, has announced Canada’s $167.4 million Whales Initiative. The initiative seeks to protect and support the recovery of the Southern Resident Killer Whale, the North Atlantic right whale, and the St. Lawrence Estuary beluga whale through comprehensive actions tailored to address the unique combinations of threats.  

Specifically in regards to the Southern Resident Killer Whales in the Salish Sea, the Government of Canada recognizes that they face an imminent threat to survival and recovery which requires immediate attention. Canada’s Whales Initiative includes immediate and comprehensive action to support their recovery by addressing the main threats they face: lack of prey, disturbance from vessels, including noise and pollution from land-based sources. Key actions include:

Reducing disturbance from underwater vessel noise by:

  • Imposing a new mandatory requirement for all marine vessels (including recreational boats) to stay at least 200 metres away from killer whales, effective July 11, 2018;
  • Asking vessels to move further away from key foraging grounds within shipping lanes of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, with the help of the U.S. Coast Guard, and partnering with the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority Enhancing Cetacean Habitat and Observation (ECHO) program on a voluntary vessel slowdown in Haro Strait starting in July 2018;
  • Working with BC Ferries to develop a noise management plan to reduce underwater noise impacts of its fleet on killer whales; and
  • Developing the necessary tools to implement mandatory measures where needed to reduce noise from vessel traffic, such legislation if required.
  • Increasing scientific research, monitoring and controls of contaminants in whales and their prey, and funding additional research on prey availability.

Improving prey availability for the Southern Resident Killer Whales by:

  • Reducing the total fishery removal for Chinook salmon by 25-35 per cent, to help increase prey availability;
  • Implementing mandatory fishery closures in specific areas where  whales forage for food by closing these areas to recreational finfishing and commercial salmon fishing, and exploring the use of additional regulatory measures; and
  • Increasing scientific research, monitoring and controls of contaminants in whales and their prey, and funding additional research on prey availability.

Enhancing monitoring under the water and in the air by:

  • Adding to the under-water hydrophone network in the Salish Sea to  better  measure noise impacts and track the noise profile of individual vessels; and
  • Increasing aerial surveillance patrols through the Transport Canada’s National Aerial Surveillance Program, and Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Fisheries Aerial Surveillance and Enforcement Program to better monitor and enforce new measures.

Encouraging compliance and strengthening enforcement by:

  • Investing in education and awareness among recreational boaters to reduce their impact on the whales by providing, for example the Cetus Research and Conservation Society with  funding of up to $415,000 for three years to deliver the Straitwatch program;
  • Adding more fishery officers on the water to verify compliance with approach distances and disturbances and harassment provisions of the regulations and enforce fisheries closures; and
  • Enhancing strong enforcement of environmental regulations to reduce contaminants affecting the killer whales.

The Minister clearly stated that these actions could include additional mandatory measures, legislative changes and adoption of new technologies. Fisheries and Oceans Canada is also undertaking a Whale Innovation Challenge initiative in partnership with Nesta’s Challenge Prize Centre to develop solutions towards real-time detection and location of whales. This initiative aims to mobilize the technology development community in Canada and globally to develop whale-specific solutions to better understand the location, abundance and movements of whales and whale populations. This will contribute to scientific whale research and overall efforts to protect endangered whales in Canada.

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Today the Government of Canada announced a major investment of  $167 million for three projects to improve port infrastructure, increasing the capacity and fluidity of the rail infrastructure that serves the south shore port area. The first two projects are led by the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, with investment from Canadian National Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway and include:

  • improving the existing Thornton Rail Tunnel ventilation system so that trains can pass through the tunnel more frequently;
  • improving the rail corridor by building 5.5 kilometres of track adjacent to the existing double-tracked corridor;
  • designing and raising Douglas Road so it crosses over the existing Canadian National railway l corridor;
  • building the Centennial Road overpass, a 600 metre-long, two-lane elevated viaduct structure;
  • extending the existing two-lane Waterfront Road by 600 metres;
  • realigning 350 metres of Commissioner Street; and
  • building 9.4 kilometres of new siding track and reconfiguring train switching operations within the  Canadian Pacific railway corridor, along the south shore of Burrard Inlet in the Cities of Vancouver and Burnaby.

The third project led by Canadian National, with investment from the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, involves designing and building a 4.2 kilometre-long secondary track, parallel to the existing Burrard Inlet line, in the City of Vancouver. The increased rail capacity will support the flow of goods through the south shore port area, as trade volumes continue to grow.

Friday, 22 June 2018 16:25

Be a Seafarer Initiative Launched

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The Seafarers' Training Institute, has partnered with Algoma Central Corporation, Groupe Desgagnés, Canada Steamship Lines and the Seafarers’ International Union of Canada (SIU), to launch a Canada-wide hiring initiative called Be a SeafarerThe Canadian commercial shipping industry directly contributes $3 billion to GDP, and the industry has an immediate need to attract and retain 300 new seafarers as Canada is expected to lose 20 percent of its aging seafarers to retirement within the next five years. This represents a huge challenge for the industry which is projected to increase significantly over the next decade.  Click to view the promotional video.


The Paris MoU Committee has approved the 2017 inspection results and adopted new performance lists for flags and Recognized Organizations (ROs). These lists will take effect from 1 July 2018.  The “White, Grey and Black (WGB) List” presents the full spectrum, from  flags with a high performance to flags with a poor performance that are considered high or very high risk, with the White List representing flags with a consistently high performance record. Compared to last year’s list, the number of flags on the “White List” has decreased by two. The Republic of Korea has moved back to the “White list” after one year on the “Grey List”. Poland has entered the “White List” as well.  New on the “Grey List” are the Islamic Republic of Iran, Kazakhstan, the Russian Federation and the United States of America, which were on the “White List” last year. 

Friday, 22 June 2018 16:05

USCG isses safety alert for PFDs

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The US Coast Guard has issued Safety Alert 11-18 to raise awareness of a potentially dangerous circumstance involving Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs). Inspections have found that a number of unwearable type 1 PFDs would have presented a problem if ever needed in an emergency. Owners and operators are strongly requested to inspect their PFDs and are reminded that regulations require PFDs to be wearable and in serviceable condition.

Friday, 22 June 2018 15:58

USCG issues 2 more BWMS type approvals


The Marine Safety Center issued two more Coast Guard Ballast Water Management System type approval certificates. The eighth certificate was issued to Samsung Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. for its Samsung Purimar BWMS that consists of filtration with electrolysis during uptake and neutralization at discharge. This approval covers models with maximum treatment rated capacities between 250 m3/h and 10,000 m3/h.  The ninth certificate was issued to BIO-UV Group. The treatment principle of the BIO-SEA B BWMS consists of filtration with UV treatment at uptake and discharge. This approval covers models with maximum treatment rated capacities between 55 m3/h and 1,400 m3/h.

Friday, 22 June 2018 13:40

CCG to receive 3 interim icebreakers

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The Canadian Coast Guard and Public Services and Procurement Canada has issued an Advanced Contract Award Notice (ACAN) to Chantier Davie of Lévis, Quebec, for the acquisition and conversion of three medium commercial icebreakers. These ships would provide interim capability for the Canadian Coast Guard, while replacement vessels are being built under the National Shipbuilding Strategy.

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The Nanaimo Port Authority has received $6.3 million from the federal government toward a new 60,000 square-foot Vehicle Processing Centre and supporting infrastructure to repurpose its existing Nanaimo Assembly Wharf as a multi-purpose general cargo terminal with an initial focus on automobiles. The project will improve Canada’s supply chain for automobiles imported into the country by addressing the significant existing transportation bottlenecks, vulnerabilities and congestion while also providing sustainable economic development opportunities for Nanaimo and Vancouver Island.  The project is expected to have significant economic and employment benefits by creating an estimated 200 jobs during construction and ‎eventually as many as 100 permanent jobs.

Friday, 22 June 2018 08:26

Transport Canada seeks candidates

 Transport Canada logo

The World Maritime University is seeking an experienced leader with an excellent academic track record to fill the post of the Canadian Chair in Marine Environmental Protection. The Canadian Chair has the opportunity to teach, research and deliver student supervisory programmes in the fields of marine environmental protection / management and marine spatial planning, as well as lead interdisciplinary innovative research programmes across the realm of maritime and ocean sectors. Applications from Canadian citizens will be accepted by the World Maritime University until August 31, 2018. Transport Canada has also seeking applications for Marine Policy Officers (EC-04) and Marine Policy Analysts (EC-05)Marine Policy Analysts (EC-05) in eastern Canada.

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The Port of Prince Rupert and DP World have agreed on terms of a project development plan that outlines the next phase of expansion for the Fairview Container Terminal. The Phase 2B expansion will increase annual throughput capacity at Canada’s second largest container terminal to 1.8 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) when complete in 2022.  The Fairview Phase 2B project follows the 2017 completion of Fairview Phase 2A, which increased the terminal capacity by 500,000 TEUs to its current capacity of 1.35 million TEUs. Construction on Phase 2B will begin in mid-2019. There will be an initial gradual release of capacity to 1.6 million TEUs, in 2020 following the completed expansion of the container yard to the south.

Friday, 22 June 2018 08:17

Stevenson appointed Prince Rupert CEO

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The Board of Directors of the Prince Rupert Port Authority has appointed Shaun Stevenson as its next President and Chief Executive Officer.  Mr. Stevenson is currently PRPA’s Vice-President of Trade Development & Public Affairs, where he has worked extensively with industry partners, shippers and marine carriers, and development proponents, as well as local First Nations and a variety of government and community stakeholders.  He has more than 20 years of strategic and operational experience at PRPA and fills the vacancy left by Don Krusel's retirement. 

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