TOTE Maritime, which announced last August that it intends to establish a new domestic shipping service from the US mainland to Hawaii, is putting the plan on hold indefinitely after a technical review determined that its berths in Honolulu would need considerable upgrade and improvements. TOTE had plans to build four new Jones Act ship to compete with Matson and Pascha Group.
CP Rail has opened a new Asia office in Shanghai, China, as it looks to further build its book of business, strengthen existing customer partnerships and continue its pursuit of sustainable, profitable growth. The Shanghai office will serve as CP's new Asian home base, to complement the company's existing offices in Beijing and Tokyo. CP offers shortest routes and industry-leading service to key markets, and is a premier partner at the Port of Vancouver, the key entry point for Asian goods into the North American economy.
An industry arbitration ruling issued this week has stopped the loading of grain ships during inclement weather in the Port of Vancouver. The arbitrator has ruled that when labour is working on hatch covers during the loading of grain through feeder holes in rain or snow, that guardrails or fall equipment must be used. The BC Maritime Employers Association is in the process of working with the stevedores and their respective safety committees in establishing new and acceptable safety procedures. Once those measures are approved and finalized, we expect grain loading in inclement weather to resume. This is expected to have an immediate impact on the fluidity of the grain movements and the extended use of the anchorages throughout the south coast during this period of wet weather. The Port of Vancouver exports over 20 million metric tonnes of Canadian grain and specialty crops each year.
Indigenous groups behind the $16 billion Eagle Spirit pipeline project has launched a GoFundMe campaign to sue Ottawa over the proposed ban in Bill C-48, Oil Tanker Moratorium Act. The funds raised through campaign would help pay for legal and administrative costs. The Eagle Spirit project would be twice the size of the Northern Gateway project, transporting as much as one million barrels a day, and has secured support from First Nations from Bruderheim, Alta., through Northern BC, to Grassy Point, BC. Eagle Spirit is backed by the Aquilini Group of Vancouver. Major Canadian oil producers including Suncor Energy Inc., Cenovus Energy Inc. and Meg Energy Corp. want it to go ahead and investment broker AltaCorp Capital Inc. has been lined up to organize financing. The lawsuit deals with the broader issues of Indigenous rights and title over traditional territories.
We are pleased to advise that the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority's ECHO Program has been nominated for the 2018 Green4Sea Awards. The winners are selected by popular vote and we therefore encourage you to VOTE NOW to recognize, not only the work of the VFPA, but also the valuable support and contribution by our industry members. Voting closes March 6, 2017.
GVHA has four new members on its Board of Directors for the 2018 – 2022 term, including Township of Esquimalt Mayor Barbara Desjardins, Bruce Hale, general manager at Finest at Sea Ocean Products, representing the Victoria Esquimalt Harbour Society, and Chief Ron Sam as representative for the Songhees Nation. Starr McMichael was also re-appointed to her second term as an independent director. An open application process was created to recruit a second independent director, which was filled by Gordon Safarik. (Pictured above from left to right: Bruce Hale, Barbara Desjardins, Gordon Safarik)
CN Rail is planning for a $3.2 billion capital program focussed on key capacity projects to meet growing freight demand and to enhance safety and efficiency through improved infrastructure maintenance. Approximately $1.6 billion will be spent on track and railway infrastructure maintenance, $200 million on equipment including new locomotives, and $800 million to increase capacity and enable growth through track expansion, investments in yards, and information technology.
The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority’s Governance and Stakeholder Relations Committee is seeks written applications to the Nominating Committee for candidates to be considered as directors on the port authority’s board of directors. The deadline to submit applications is 5 p.m. on Friday, February 16, 2018. The Committee is seeking eligible candidates who have generally acknowledged and accepted stature within the transportation industry or the business community with relevant knowledge and extensive experience related to the management of a business, operation of a port or maritime trade, major capital infrastructure projects, and executive leadership in a corporate or board setting. For more information visit the Port of Vancouver website.
Members of the Canadian National Railways Police Association (CNRPA) have ratified a new collective agreement with CN. The six-year agreement, effective Jan. 1, 2018 through Dec. 31, 2023 represents approximately 65 officers with CN Police across Canada.
The Government of Canada has launched a new webpage where exporters can register a trade barrier. Through this new web page Canadian businesses can now register a trade barrier and then work with the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service and partner departments to address trade barriers affecting their exports or investments abroad. Barriers can be (and are not limited to) administrative procedures, quantitative restrictions (such as quotas), price controls, licensing requirements, product labelling requirements and privacy requirements.
After almost 30 years of acting as a strong voice for the ocean carrier industry in the US transpacific trade, the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement (TSA) will officially close its doors on February 8, 2018. Established in 1989, TSA was among the first carrier discussion agreements formed after passage of the 1984 Shipping Act in the US. In addition to TSA’s commercial initiatives, the Agreement has provided a forum for the lines to discuss trade conditions, market developments, and business and economic trends. Changes to the commercial and operational environment has resulted in the TSA’s original mission becoming less important and no longer viable.
The United States and Russian Federation have proposed a system of two-way routes for vessels to follow in the Bering Strait and Bering Sea. The nations jointly developed and submitted the proposal to the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to establish six two-way routes and six precautionary areas. The proposed two-way routes will be voluntary for all domestic and international ships. No additional Aids to Navigation (ATON) are being proposed to mark the recommended two-way routes and the routing measures do not limit commercial fishing or subsistence activities.
China has also just announced plans to develop shipping lanes through the Arctic to become a "Polar Silk Route" that could 20 days off the 48 days it currently takes to get to Rotterdam from China via the Suez Canal, estimates suggest.
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued a notice stating that the time for replies and further submissions to the record in the Petition of the Coalition for Fair Port Practices (Petition P4-16) has been extended to February 1, 2018.
Rolls-Royce has opened a new Research & Development Centre for Autonomous Ships in Finland to develop the technologies required for a more autonomous shipping industry. The centre includes a remote and autonomous experience space aimed at showcasing the autonomous ship technologies Rolls-Royce has already introduced as well as those in the development stage. Rolls-Royce and its partners will be able to carry out projects focussed on autonomous navigation, the development of land-based control centres, and the use of artificial intelligence in future remote and autonomous shipping operations. The experience space also aims to aid the development introduction of new rules and standards for autonomous shipping. Last year Rolls-Royce signed a deal with Google to develop Rolls-Royce’s intelligent awareness software.
The Coast Guard offloaded more than 47,000 pounds of cocaine worth over US$721 million from the Coast Guard Cutter Stratton in San Diego following 23 separate interdictions in the eastern Pacific Ocean by US and Canadian forces operating in international waters off the coast of Central and South America. The crew of Stratton stopped two low profile go fast boats in three days, resulting in the seizure of more than 5,800 pounds of cocaine worth almost $78 million. The crews stopped five suspected drug smuggling boats in less than two months, resulting in the seizure of more than 12,000 pounds of cocaine worth more than $165 million.
The Coast Guard will also offload a case executed by HMCS Nanaimo and a US Coast Guard law enforcement detachment, which occurred Nov. 21, 2017. The Canadian-US crew seized more than 3,300 pounds of cocaine worth more than $44 million from a go fast boat in international waters off the coast of Central America. During their patrol, the Canadian-US crew of Nanaimo seized 4,385 pounds of cocaine worth more than $58 million.
The multinational effort to combat criminal networks in the region includes more than 19 Partner Nations operating with Joint Interagency Task Force South (JIATFS) a component of US Southern Command. This includes Canadian forces, who helped stop more than 16,960 pounds of illegal drugs worth more than $227 million since Oct. 1, 2016. JIATFS’ Partner Nations removed approximately 113 of the 283 tons of cocaine seized or disrupted for FY17. JIATFS detects and monitors illicit trafficking in the air and maritime domains to facilitate International and Interagency interdiction and apprehension of illicit traffickers.
After 48 years of serving the shipping industry, Klaus P. Mende announced his retirement as ship agent from Ocean Agencies, Vancouver, on March 1, 2017 and now his final retirement as of February 15, 2018 from Ocean Agencies, Seattle. His career started in January 1970 with Federal Commerce & Navigation of Montreal (now Fednav) as a boarding clerk and active member of Fednav's Arctic Operations, and as a seasoned agent, was transfered in 1976 to head their agency office at Detroit, MI., Fedmar International. He left Detroit in 1981 to join Dodwell of Canada, Vancouver, as Tramp Operations Manager and later as Vice-President. In 1985 he joined Norton Lilly, Vancouver, as Operations Manager. He founded Ocean Agencies Ltd. in 1991, followed by Ocean Agencies, Inc. in 1999. The two offices attended to over 3500 vessel calls and Klaus wishes to thank their valued principals and all the fine people in this indusry he had the pleasure of working with and helped him to this reach this plateau. He is equally thankful to his wife of 47 years, Jeanne, three adult children and twelve (yes 12) grandkids who put up with him having received telephone calls 24/7.