The ECHO Program team is pleased to share that southern resident killer whales have been confirmed as present in the slowdown trial area. Members of all three pods were seen and heard in Haro Strait this morning. The return of these endangered whales to the Salish Sea signals the start of the 2019 ECHO Program voluntary vessel slowdown trial.
Vehicle carriers, cruise and container vessels are asked to slow down to at least 14.5 knots and bulk carriers, tankers, ferries and government vessels will slow to at least 11.5 knots in Haro Strait and Boundary Pass.
Woodfibre LNG has finally received its facility permit from the British Columbia (BC) Oil and Gas Commission (OGC). The new LNG export facility planned for Howe Sound must comply the 35 conditions contained in the permit. The conditions exceed the regulatory requirements to address public, environmental and safety concerns. The conditions specify requirements for design, construction and operations, and include a tsunami hazard study, a flaring notification plan and reports on all emissions. Woodfibre LNG President, David Keane has indicated that a final decision to proceed with this project is expected this summer.
Seaspan has unveiled its new state-of-the-art Marine Simulator Facility, the first and only of its kind in North America. It is the cornerstone of Seaspan Marine’s $6.5-million, multi-year safety and training program first announced in May of 2018. This training program was developed in collaboration with SeaWays Global, the international standard bearer in tug training, simulation, auditing and assessments. The facility provides advanced educational opportunities for Seaspan Marine mariners, giving them access to continuous, real-time training. The two fully-enclosed simulators feature 17 computers and 12 displays, providing a floor-to-ceiling, 360-degree environmental visual that completely immerses trainees in real-world scenarios.
Electric vessels have arrived on the BC coast. The Seaspan Reliant, is one of two natural gas/electric hybrid ships working on the BC coast. The vessel’s batteries are recharged by large engines burning natural gas. The hybrid technology allows ships to reduce the amount of engines that need to run at any given time, leading to a substantial reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
The Chamber President, Robert Lewis-Manning is presenting our Engineering Award and Deck Award at this year’s BCIT Nautical Sciences and Marine Engineering Convocation.
Emily Buck is this year’s Engineering Award recipient. Emily completed her Cadet time with Teekay on tankers around the world and with Norcon Marine Services serving aboard a passenger ferry on the East Coast. Prior to joining the Marine Engineering program, she served aboard Seismic streamer ships as a data processor in the Mediterranean, Gulf of Guinea, the North Seas, Barents Sea and the western North Atlantic. She was also previously a heavy equipment technician in northern Alberta. She has just joined the Ramform Titan, the most powerful and efficient seismic ship in the world.
Kris Fredheim is the Deck recipient. He completed his Cadet time in the program with Marine Link, Algoma Central Corporation and BC Ferries. Prior to coming to the program he worked as a deckhand of a 50 ft troller in BC coastal waters from Campbell River to the Alaska border. He played many years of hockey including the NHL where he was a defenseman with the Minnesota Wild 2011/2012.
The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority, in coordination with Centerm container terminal operator DP World, is donating $2 million to community initiatives as part of the Centerm Expansion Project in the Port of Vancouver. The donation as part of the Centerm Expansion Project was determined based on input received from the community through formal engagement on the project. The donation includes: $1 million toward improvements to CRAB Park at Portside, $250,000 toward First Nations initiatives, $125,000 to Strathcona Community Centre Association, $125,000 to Ray-Cam Co-operative Association, and $500,000 to create the three-year Centerm Community Fund to support projects proposed by organizations in Downtown Eastside.
The Canadian government has announced that they will be making a $17 million investment into increasing capacity at the Port of Belledune to increase the movement of domestic goods to international markets. The project includes filling in the water gap between the M.D. Young Terminal and Rayburn Doucett Terminal to create a larger berth. This work will also create additional space for commodities at the south end of Terminal 3 which handles general cargo and bulk. The Port of Belledune is a deep-water facility located in northeastern New Brunswick which handled its record annual volumes of 2.9 million metric tons in 2018.
The second offshore wind farm off the coast of the US is now under construction near Virginia. Dominion Energy Inc. has begun work to install cables for a wind farm in the Atlantic Ocean. Two 6-megawatt turbines will be installed 27 miles (43 kilometers) east of Virginia Beach. They’re expected to start producing power for up to 3,000 homes next year.
The IMO has released updated guidelines to help shipping companies prepare for implementation of the global sulphur cap for ships’ fuel oil. The comprehensive guidelines on implementation planning will help ensure compliance across the shipping industry. The full guide can be accessed here.
China’s Ministry of Transport has raised its security recommendation for Chinese vessels in the Malacca Strait to the highest level. The Malacca Strait is a major potential bottleneck for global oil. While the security level has been raised to MARSEC level three, no details have been given on heightened threats.
A new 24-hour nine-language seafarer helpline, iCall, has been launched by The Synergy Marine Group, in collaboration with the Tata Institute of Social Sciences and iCall. The helpline is intended to address growing industry concerns around seafarer wellbeing. The service hopes to reduce seafarer suicides, raise awareness of mental health and gender, and equip participants with self-help coping mechanisms for addressing their own distress and/or help them offer support to others at sea. The service is available free-of-charge via phone, email, and the chat-based nULTA App.
Dubai's DP World has expanded its shipping portfolio with the $1.079bn takeover of Middle East offshore support vessel operator Topaz Energy & Marine. It has bought the company from Oman's Renaissance Services and Standard Chartered Private Equity/Affirma Capital. Topaz has a fleet of 117 vessels, predominantly in the Caspian Sea, Middle East and North Africa, and West Africa regions.
IMO has proposed a review of the in-water performance of Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) lifejackets after the UK’s Marine Accident Investigation Branch reported on the deaths of three fishing vessel crew members who had drowned while wearing SOLAS lifejackets. Although sea and environmental conditions were calm, these seafarers were found by the rescue services in a face-down position. Evidence has shown that the organisation’s requirements for the design and testing of lifejackets may not provide the necessary safety assurances.
HMM has joined THE Alliance, becoming the fourth member of the liner grouping set up by Hapag-Lloyd, Ocean Network Express and Yang Ming in 2016. HMM will join the alliance as a full member, with a new contract between the four lines set to officially start on April 1, 2020. Additionally, all four members have agreed to extend the partnership for 10 years through to 2030. Previously, HMM was aligned to the Maersk and MSC alliance 2M, but was only able to negotiate a vessel sharing agreement which was due for renewal next April.
France-based Neoline has selected Neopolina shipyard to construct its first two sail-powered roll-on/roll-off cargo ships, which will operate between France and the US as early as 2021. Neoline was established in 2015 with the intention of the becoming the world’s first shipowner specializing in modern sailing cargo ships. The company has partnered with French automaker Renault to develop the ships, which will be 136-meter long and equipped with 4,200 square meters of sail area. The ships will initially operate on a pilot route joining Saint-Nazaire, France with the U.S. East Coast and Saint-Pierre & Miquelon off the coast of Newfoundland.
Hurtigruten’s cruise ship MS Roald Amundsen is the worlds first battery powered cruise ship, due to set sail on its maiden voyage from Norway to the arctic early next week. The Roald Amundsen is a hybrid expedition cruise ship, can take 500 passengers and is designed to sail in harsh climate waters. While the engines run mainly on marine gasoil, the ship’s battery pack enables it to run solely on batteries for around 45 to 60 minutes under ideal conditions. The company estimates that the battery pack will reduce fuel consumption and save about 20% in carbon dioxide emissions, compared to if the ship was operating on marine gasoil alone.
As part of the 2019 Canada Day celebrations, on-water fireworks displays will occur on the evening of July 1st, commencing at 21:00. Locations of the barges include Coal Harbour and Dundarave.
The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority anticipates greater than normal volumes of recreational traffic in these areas both during and transiting through the port after these events. To promote safe navigation during this event, no deep sea vessel traffic movement (including those vessels operated under pilotage waiver) or commercial towing activity is to occur between the western boundary of TCZ1 (First Narrows) and the eastern boundary of TCZ2 (Second Narrows) between the hours of 21:00 and 24:00 of July 1st, 2019. Pilotage assignments and commercial towing activity should be coordinated accordingly.