548 Vancouver Rail


The Port of Vancouver, Canadian National Railway, and the Canadian federal government signed an agreement on Thursday, to build a second track to move more cargo and increase trade through Vancouver’s harbour. The project involves double-tracking a 4 km section of rail that links expanding import and export terminals on the south shore of the Burrard Inlet to the national rail network. A timeline has not yet been published.



Friday, 15 February 2019 13:34

VFPA increases noise reduction criteria

port of vancouver


As of January 1, 2019, the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority has expanded the eligibility criteria for its EcoAction Program to include more underwater noise-reducing options and emissions reduction options.  Those ships that qualify will receive discounted harbour dues of up to 47 per cent. The EcoAction Program now accepts quiet ship notations from five different ship classification societies and five propeller technologies, all of which can help reduce underwater noise emissions. 



548 Vancouver Ports


Cargo coming through the Vancouver Ports has increased over the last month, pushing facilities to 85 percent utilization (compared the maximum industry standard of 80 percent). This has caused a doubling of container dwell times at rail facilities, underscoring the need for additional infrastructure to handle future growth. Last week, container dwell times at Deltaport were in excess of seven days, while Centerm’s dwell times averaged three to five days, and Vanterm’s dwell times averaged five to seven days. Main causes of the excessive dwell times include rail service issues, increasing container volumes, and the unprecedented container discharges from mega-ships. 




Following the issuance of a joint notice of dispute on January 25th, the Minister of Labour has now appointed Ms. Kathy M. Peters, Regional Director – Pacific Region, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services (FMCS) as Conciliation Officer to assist the BCMEA and the ILWU Canada in concluding a renewal collective agreement within 60 days (April 13th) unless an extension is mutually agreed upon.  On the 21st day following termination of the conciliation, either party can issue 72 hours strike or lockout notice.



548 Nature Fund


Yesterday, Minister Wilkinson, the Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, launched the Canada Nature Fund for Aquatic Species at Risk, a $55 million investment over five years to support the recovery of aquatic species at risk. In partnership with Indigenous communities, organizations, provinces and territories, industry and academia this fund focuses on seven priority freshwater places and two priority marine threats, including physical and acoustic disturbance such as ship strikes and marine noise. Interested parties are encouraged to review the eligibility criteria and submit an expression of interest by March 22, 2019.  Successful applicants at this stage will be invited to submit a project proposal for further consideration. 



548 Garneau Abandoned Boats


Earlier this week Transport Minister, the Honourable Marc Garneau announced that the federal government is providing over $190,000 to remove wrecks and/or gain legal possession of abandoned boats across Canada.  In BC these include the removal of 13 and another three funded to obtain legal possession in Victoria, Steveston, Alert Bay, Port Edward, Pender and Bowen Island.



Transport Canada logo


Transport Canada is proposing to amend the Navigation Safety Regulations to expand the Automatic Identification System (AIS) carriage requirements to a wider category of passenger vessels. Amendments published in the Canada Gazette Part I, Vol 153 No 6 on February 9th will strengthen the surveillance and enforcement of current and future requirements respecting the disturbance of the whales by small vessels. Affected stakeholders include owners of commercial vessels registered in Canada as passenger vessels or ferries, if their vessels are certified to carry more than 12 passengers or if their vessels are eight metres or more in length and are certified to carry passengers. Having access to AIS data will help to inform future protection measures of this endangered species and the protection of other species.



cbsa logo


The Canadian Border Services Agency National Targeting Centre has updated its Pre-Arrival Notice requirements. Details of the requirements can be found here: https://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/forms-formulaires/bsf732-eng.html.



548 US Automation


APM Terminals is planning to use unmanned straddle carriers at Los Angeles, a pilot project on a 100-acre parcel at its Pier 400 terminal. The unmanned straddle carriers will bring lower upfront costs because they don’t require extensive modifications to existing terminals. This is a sign that US West Coast terminals are embracing automation in order to handle the calls from mega ships. If the auto-strad model proves to work efficiently in this pilot project, it could be scaled for the demands of other terminals on the West Coast. On the East and Gulf coasts, opposition from labour organizations has reduced the amount of automation, with the International Longshoremen’s Association not allowing the use of automated horizontal transportation such as auto-strads or automated guided vehicles. However, the semi-automated terminals in New York-New Jersey and Virginia have incorporated efficient automated stacking cranes in the yards.



548 LA Port Congestion


Congestion at the Los Angeles-Long Beach port complex is now affecting the entire supply chain, with issues unlikely to be relieved before March. The port handles close to 40 percent of US imports and movement has been backed up since August, due to a busy peak season for holiday merchandise, followed by an increase in imports as retailers and manufacturers attempted to get ahead of threatened 25 percent tariffs on more than $200 billion of imports from China. Many of those goods are still at the port, taking up valuable real estate. Currently, it is taking 15 days on average for containers to move from the ports to inland destinations. The backlog of containers at the marine terminals because imports can't be drayed to distribution warehouses in a timely manner is now being compounded by service issues at the western railroads, BNSF and Union Pacific. The railroads are not departing trains on schedule, especially to secondary locations outside of the major hubs such as Chicago and Dallas Fort-Worth, so intermodal containers that should be moved from the marine terminals within 24 hours are sitting there for days.



ICS Intl Logo


Last week, ICS members met to review the progress in persuading the IMO to take measures to address expected implementation problems for the 2020 global sulphur cap. This includes outstanding safety and fuel compatibility issues associated with the use of new 0.5% sulphur blends and continuing uncertainty over the availability of compliant fuels in every port worldwide. The ICS Board endorsed the finalization of proposals to IMO on short term measures including, tightening the Energy Efficiency Design Index for new ships (requiring ships built in 2025 to be 30% more efficient than those delivered before 2013). Over the next decade massive investment in research and development of zero CO2 emitting propulsion systems and other technologies which don’t yet exist in a form that can be readily applied to international shipping will be required. This will need to be a key component of the IMO strategy when detailed ideas for long term measures are taken forward during 2020. The ICS Guidance on Compliance with the 2020 Global Sulphur Cap can be downloaded here: http://www.ics-shipping.org/docs/default-source/resources/ics-guidance-on-implementation-of-2020-global-sulphur-cap---january-2019.pdf?sfvrsn=20



548 Hapag Lloyd


Hapag-Lloyd has created a new steel floor container, which it claims can carry heavier cargoes than existing wood-floored boxes. The containers are designed for all types of cargo and is able to handle moving heavy goods, like machinery. Hapag-Lloyd statistics show a wooden floor TEU can load 4.6 tonnes per metre, while a steel floor box can load 7.6 tonnes per metre. The container also has a much higher number of lashing rings, making it easier and more efficient to secure. The tare weight of steel floor containers is also about 150 kg lighter than those with traditional floors. This, in turn, means that customers can load a higher load weight.



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