Greg Wirtz, President of Cruise Lines International Association, North West & Canada appeared in Business in Vancouver this week to express concerns with the lack of planning for cruise capacity in the Port of Vancouver. This year's passenger numbers through Vancouver are projected at 841,000. The loss of Ballantyne Pier and the limitations under the Lions' Gate Bridge for larger vessels are forcing cruise lines to look elsewhere to homeport for the popular Alaskan cruise. In 2016, the cruise lines, their guests and crew spent nearly $1 billion directly in BC, employing local residents by the thousands — from longshore workers to taxi drivers to entertainers to summer students – and everything in between. All in, the total economic impact of the cruise industry in BC now totals $2.2 billion per year.