This this week the Chamber of Shipping together with the Western Marine Community Coalition submitted an appliction to intervene in the EcoJustice lawsuit against the federal government seeking an emergency protection order for the Southern Resident Killer Whales. Under the Species at Risk Act, when it is determined that a species is facing imminent threat, the government must assess the situation and make recommendations to Cabinet for emergency measures if needed. EcoJustice filed an affidavit on October 5th on behalf of the David Suzuki Foundation, Georgia Strait Alliance, Natural Resources Defense Council, Raincoast Conservation Foundation and World Wildlife Fund Canada. The rationale behind the intervention is for industry to present the success of the voluntary efforts and investment already made by the marine sector over the last several years and hold off any potential regulations or measures that may be less effective or have unintended consequences on marine safety and gateway competitiveness.
On October 15, 2018 the 10,000 TEU Cosco Pacific operated by COSCO Shipping Lines became the first container vessel to successfully plug into shore power in Canada. The vessel was plugged in for almost 24 hours without experiencing any issues during cargo operations. COSCO has been working with DP World and had undergone testing with two other vessels over the last few months. Congratulations to all parties involved in this significant event!
The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority governance and stakeholder relations committee seeks applications in writing to the nominating committee for candidates to be considered as directors on the port authority’s board of directors. The deadline to submit applications is 5 p.m. on Friday, November 2, 2018. The nominating committee is seeking eligible candidates who have generally acknowledged and accepted stature within the transportation industry or the business community. To learn about the nominating process and eligibility criteria or download the director recruitment briefing document.
Robert Allan Ltd. has been awarded a contract to design a new version of the successful Z-Tech® 4500 tugs for the United States Navy (USN). The USN already has six vessels of this design, known as the YT 802 Class, in service. This first group were delivered between 2010-2012 and are in use in the Pacific Northwest and Japanese waters. Four new tugs (with an option for two more) will be built in Anacortes, WA by Dakota Creek Industries Inc. The hull form for the new vessels will be essentially identical to previous versions of this Class of vessels, but with deckhouse changes to suit new EPA Tier IV engines, which require significantly larger exhaust emission systems. Changes to the fendering system will incorporate feedback from operators on the existing vessels.
The Standing Senate Committee on Banking,Trade and Commerce’s has released recommendations in a report called Canada: Still Open For Business? The report outlined a number of recommendations to the federal government to improve Canadian business competitiveness, including improving the movement of Canadian products to market.
The federal government’s $7.2 million investment in the marine satellite innovation company based in Cambridge will help exactEarth create and maintain 67 jobs and will support the Canadian company in becoming a world leader in real-time satellite Automatic Identification System (AIS) services for ship tracking. The project will allow the company to update its existing satellite network and to develop and integrate big data analytics into its services. exactEarth’s products will be used by the global shipping industry to optimize ship routing, in turn helping reduce fossil fuel consumption and the impact of shipping on the ocean environment.
Thanks in part to this investment, exactEarth will invest more in R&D, see more intellectual property developed and retained in Canada, and continue its collaboration with universities and research institutions in the Marine Environmental Observation, Prediction and Response Network (MEOPAR) group. This collaboration includes exactEarth’s support for the WHaLE project, which focuses on developing a satellite system to reduce the number of collisions between whales and ships.
Transport Canada has issued Ship Safety Bulletin #12/2018 – Legalization of cannabis in Canada and vessel operation. The bulletin reminds authorized representatives and seafarers of their responsibility to operate vessels safely, taking into account the implications of the Cannabis Act and related amendments.
The push is on for Parliament to quickly ratify the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) trade agreement so that Canada can reap the benefits that come from being an early adopter of the deal. Canada's CPTPP legislation, Bill C-79, passed the House of Commons on Tuesday and it is just now starting its journey through the Senate.
The federal government has given Lockheed Martin Canada the first crack at inking a contract to design Canada’s $60-billion fleet of new warships. Lockheed’s proposed design beat out two rival submissions to design the replacements for the navy’s entire frigate and destroyer fleets. Lockheed Martin Canada Inc. must pass the due diligence process first and it is anticipated a contract award will be in place this winter, with construction beginning in the early 2020s. The Canadian Surface Combatant project is the largest, most complex procurement ever undertaken by the Government of Canada.
The Coast Guard recently published a letter to the Coast Guard-accepted independent laboratories (ILs) providing guidance for evaluating manufacturer-identified operational limitations during type approval testing of ballast water management systems (BWMS). The letter clarifies the responsibilities of the BWMS manufacturer, the Coast Guard-accepted IL, and the Coast Guard, with regard to evaluating and assessing operational limitations of BWMS and including limiting conditions referenced in type approval certificates, and how to amend these conditions.
As US coal consumption declines, the US Department of the Interior is indicated that it is considering using military bases to accommodate export facilities for coal or natural gas. Six proposed coal ports in Washington and Oregon have been rejected or shelved due to worries about air and water pollution and rail safety, combined with changing market conditions. The department’s strategy is to use naval facilities on the west coast regardless of whether or not the states where the bases are located agree to it. Washington State governor, Jay Inslee, released a statement questioning the “harebrained” logic behind this move in view of Pentagon reports on climate change.
The Trump administration is pushing to ease the rollout of the IMO’s global sulphur cap that is set to take effect on January 1, 2020. The administration is concerned that the surge in demand for specific fuels will affect all commodity markets and prices for crude, diesel and other petroleum products. The White House is gauging the support of other countries for a more staggered approach and is backing proposals for enforcement of the new measures to gradually increase over time, an approach that will be discussed at at the IMO's Marine Environment Protection Committee meetings next week. Major flag states like Panama, Liberia and the Marshall Islands along with trade bodies have said the IMO should examine a possible “grace period” of a few months until all oceangoing vessels empty their tanks of high-sulfur fuel.
The Rhine River’s water level has slumped to its lowest in more than a decade, choking off fuel supplies to key European markets. Water levels have been affected by severe drought and are forecast to fall even further to 35 centimetres. Fuel stockpiles in the region are rising as most oil barge movements have been restricted and passenger liners have stopped transits since Monday. Thyssenkrupp declared force majeure as the delivery of raw materials to its Duisburg plant has been disrupted. Meanwhile the dried-out riverbed has exposed all kinds of objects, including a 50-kilo World War II bomb that will have to be defused in the coming days.
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.
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.
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.
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.