Commercial marine shipping prefers predictability in the regulatory environment, especially as the capital investments associated with vessels and infrastructure are significant and must be made for a horizon outward of twenty years. In certain situations, regulations affecting the marine industry have been made in isolation and without a comprehensive understanding of the technical, operational, and commercial realities of shipping. In addition to having a predictable regulatory environment, commercial marine shipping is regulated globally and must be prepared to trade in new global markets. In order for this to happen, a predictable and harmonized regulatory approach is essential, especially with Canada’s major trading partners. The Marine Transportation Framework of the future should include: Access to key supply chain data so as to accurately influence transportation policy and regulatory development; The integration of scientific research from the public and private sector; A…
The Government of Canada has indicated its intent to establish a moratorium on the shipment of crude oil off coastal waters of Northwestern British Columbia. Currently, this region does not include any marine shipping of crude oil. The export movement of crude oil by ship cannot occur without the product first moving by another mode of transportation to the coast, such as by pipeline or rail. This initial movement of the product must be approved by specific federal government regulators at a minimum, and can include an additional provincial review process and subsequent approval.   A moratorium on marine transportation would set a negative precedence and should not be a substitute for existing strong international and federal regulations. It may also contravene Canada’s commitment to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. However, if such a policy decision…
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