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Two years after the grounding of the articulated tug and barge, Nathan E. Stewart, in Gale Pass, the Heiltsuk Nation has filed a claim against the federal and provincial governments, as well as the operator, Kirby Corporation. The 110,000 litres spill impacted an important Heiltsuk food harvesting, village and cultural site.  The lawsuit alleges that government agencies and the operator were too slow to respond to the emergency, failing to address the impacts on the health and safety of the Heiltsuk people and their way of life.  The Heiltsuk Nation is seeking compensation for the considerable financial and administrative burden of essential traditional and scientific testing of the scope and impact of the spill. The civil claim is also asking the court to clarify whether Aboriginal title, a legal term that is used to describe the inherent Indigenous right to land or territory, also applies to the seabed and foreshore, the part of a shore between the water and developed land. Transport Canada has laid three charges against the Kirby Corporation, including two pollution-related counts.

Friday, 12 October 2018 13:15

Paper Excellence to buy Catalyst Paper

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British Columbia-based Catalyst Paper Corp. has reached an agreement to sell three coastal mills to Paper Excellence Canada of Richmond, B.C.  The mills are located at Crofton and Port Alberni on Vancouver Island and Powell River.  The jobs and livelihoods of 1,500 British Columbia forestry workers will be secured by the acquisition which is still subject to regulatory review and final approvals.  Catalyst Paper manufactures 1.3 million tonnes of pulp and paper products. These products include industrial packaging, food service, coated ground-wood, newsprint and directory papers. Customers include retailers, publishers and commercial printers in North America, Latin America, the Pacific Rim and Europe.

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Canada Border Services Agency has issued Customs Notice 18-17, an order imposing a 25% surtax on the importation of certain steel goods effective October 25, 2018.  This includes, steel plate, concrete reinforcing bar, energy tubular products, hot-rolled sheet, pre-painted steel, stainless steel wire and wire rod.  Absent a specific permit, the safeguard surtax will apply to all goods including those released from a Customs Bonded Warehouse or Sufferance Warehouse on or after October 25, 2018 when the Order comes into force.

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BC Premier John Horgan, Washington state Governor, Jay Inslee, and Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, Jonathan Wilkinson, met this week to discussion regional issues including the importance of ongoing joint efforts on protecting whale populations, specifically the at-risk Southern Resident Killer Whale population in view of the growing concerns about activity on the water and prey availability. BC and Washington State entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to act jointly to grow the region’s innovation economy, protect the environment and combat climate change, promote trade and improve transportation connectivity.

Friday, 12 October 2018 13:08

CBSA Arctic Customs Clearance Pilot Program

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Canada Border Services Agency has issued Customs Notice 18-14, on the Arctic Shipping Electronic Commercial Clearances Program (ASECC) pilot program. The program provides a risk-based alternative approach for clearing commercial cargo and conveyances in the marine mode, for specific vessels destined to the Arctic. The program is being updated for the 2019 arctic shipping season.

Friday, 12 October 2018 13:06

USCG sets vision for maritime commerce

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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.

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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.

Friday, 12 October 2018 12:57

ONE and Hapag-Lloyd offering feeder service

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Japanese container line joint venture Ocean Network Express (ONE) and Hapag-Lloyd concluded a bi-lateral feeder agreement that will initially cover trades in intra-Asia and intra-Europe. Under the terms of a “bilateral strategic feeder network cooperation agreement,” the lines will share space on their respective feeder vessels.  Since the reorganization of the alliance structure, Mr Habben Jansen, Hapag-Lloyd CEO has repeatedly said that lines would likely deepen their cooperation beyond the deep-sea trades into feeder, and even possibly in-land haulage, operations. ONE and Hapag-Lloyd are both members of THE Alliance on the long haul trades.

Friday, 12 October 2018 12:54

Panama Canal set record volume

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The Panama Canal closed its 2018 fiscal year with a record tonnage of 442.1 million Panama Canal tons (PC/UMS), representing a 9.5 percent increase from the previous year. With this number, the Panama Canal surpasses the cargo projections of 429.4 million PC/UMS tons for FY 2018, as well as the 403.8 million PC/UMS tons registered in FY 2017.   The increase was driven by the transit of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) carriers, containerships, chemical tankers and vehicle carriers.  Panama Canal said that the main users during the period were the US, China, Mexico, Chile and Japan, while some 62.8 percent of the total cargo transiting the canal had its origin or destination in the United States.

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Tim Wickmann has been appointed as the new Managing Director for the World Shipping Council’s new Asian office to be located in Singapore.  Mr. Wickmann served most recently as CEO of MCC Transport, the Intra Asian arm of Maersk Line, and has worked in various leadership positions in international liner shipping for the last three decades.

Friday, 12 October 2018 10:26

No charges for Greenpeace danglers

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Greenpeace protesters who dangled from the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge in August won't face charges. Seven protesters were arrested after hanging from the Vancouver bridge for 36 hours, preventing an oil tanker from leaving Burrard Inlet. Five more were arrested for helping organize the stunt.  North Vancouver RCMP recommended mischief charges against all 12, but the BC Prosecution Service said Tuesday it won't be approving the charges as it was not convinced there was a substantial likelihood of conviction and that laying a charge would be in the public interest.

Friday, 05 October 2018 14:43

UN sees 4% growth in maritime trade

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The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development’s (UNCTAD) annual Review of Maritime Transport indicates that total maritime trade volumes reached 10.7 billion tons in 2017, an increase of 411 million tons or 4 percent, half of which was dry bulk commodities. A similar 4 percent growth is anticipated this year. Global containerized trade increased by 6.4 percent in 2017. While the liner shipping industry saw further consolidation through mergers and acquisitions and global alliance restructuring. The three global liner shipping alliances that dominate capacity deployed on the three major east–west container routes (the 2M, Ocean Alliance and THE Alliance) collectively account for 93 percent of deployed capacity.

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