Friday, May 18, 2018

Moore and De Herrera Receive Maritime Awards

Capt. Mike Moore, Vice President of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association (PMSA), received the annual Puget Sound Maritime Achievement Award, and Roque De Herrera, City of Seattle’s Office of Economic Development, received the Public Official of the Year Award at the annual Harley Marine Seattle Maritime Festival Breakfast.

Moore was recognized for his outstanding professionalism and commitment to improve the maritime industry in all safety matters, and joins respected maritime industry professionals and public officials who have received the award since 1951, including representatives of steamship lines and agents, tug and barge operators, passenger vessel operators, ports, stevedores, shipyards, labor and government.

Moore has directed PMSA’s Pacific Northwest operations since retiring from the US Coast Guard in 2002. He graduated from the Coast Guard Academy in 1977 and was promoted through the ranks to Captain of the Port stationed in Seattle. He earned an advanced degree in marine affairs from the University of Washington.

“This recognition is well-deserved,” said John McLaurin, president of PMSA. “Mike is an outstanding individual who is nationally recognized as an expert on maritime safety and environmental protection issues.”

The Pacific Merchant Shipping Association (PMSA) is an independent, not-for-profit association focused on global trade. PMSA operates offices in Oakland, Long Beach and Seattle, and represents owners and operators of marine terminals and U.S. and foreign vessels operating throughout the world.

The Public Official of the year award recognizes the contributions and support of a local, state, or federal policymaker who has demonstrated leadership, understanding, and appreciation of the maritime industry.

“This year we present our award to a public policy professional whose work is vitally important but frequently overlooked,” said Sue Chesney, president of the Seattle Propeller Club. “We present the award to underscore and recognize our honoree’s contributions, and also to underscore the value of developing and maintaining professional relationships built on mutual trust.”

For more than twenty years, De Herrera has made a career with the City as a planner and a business advocate. “Whether it’s fire and safety issues, stormwater, marine infrastructure, or protecting shipyards, Roque has thrown himself into every project with honesty, passion and dedication,” said Chesney.

Long Beach Box Numbers Rise

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Long Beach moved 618,438 TEUs last month—a 10.8 percent jump when compared to April 2017, according to numbers released Monday. Imports rose 8.4 percent to 312,376 TEUs and exports soared 22 percent to 141,799 TEUs. Empty containers were also up seven percent with 164,264 TEUs.

These totals add to the port’s 17 percent growth in cargo movement for the first four months of the year in which the port has handled 2.5 million TEUs. It’s also on track to beat last year’s record pace, according to the port.

“Both imports and exports are beating expectations so far this year,” said port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “For us, part of that is the shift of services we saw a year ago, but at least some of our strong growth appears to be a result of trade tensions as anxious shippers rush to get their cargo to overseas markets.”

The global economy has benefited from a slow yet robust economic expansion, said Harbor Commission President Lou Anne Bynum.

“As long as it continues we expect to play a big role since we’re a natural trade conduit between United States and China, the world’s two largest economies,” she said.

Oakland Sees More Cargo

By Karen Robes Meeks

April cargo volume at the Port of Oakland rose 2.9 percent over the same period last year, according to the port’s latest numbers. It was Oakland’s best month for loaded imports in history with75,369 TEUs. It beat the record set in April 2006, when the port handled 75,243 TEUs, and also surpassed April 2017 numbers when the port moved 74,991 TEUs.

Meanwhile, exports reached77,995 TEUs, short of April 2017 figures when the port handled 78,776 TEUs. “Growth in exports was hampered by the negative effects of China’s stringent rules on recycled materials,” according to the port. “However, the Port’s meat, fruits and vegetable exports helped offset the loss in recycled commodities.”

In the first four months, the port moved 791,371 TEUs in total cargo volume, more than the 768,789 TEUs it did during the same period last year.

“These container statistics show that we are off to a solid start in 2018,” said port Maritime Director John Driscoll. “We’re on track for steady growth in our cargo volumes for the rest of the year.”

Vancouver, USA Comment Opportunities

By Karen Robes Meeks

There are two upcoming opportunities to weigh in on the Port of Vancouver USA’s Terminal 1 project.

On May 22, there will be an architectural concepts Board of Commissioners workshop, following the commissioners 9:30 a.m. meeting. The public will be able to view conceptual designs for the project’s landscape and public marketplace at Terminal 1. The meeting will take place at the Port of Vancouver USA Administrative Offices located at 3103 NW Lower River Road, Vancouver, Wash.

Later that day, there will be a Terminal 1 architectural concepts open house from 4 to 7 p.m. at Warehouse ’23 Event Space, 100 Columbia Street, Vancouver, Wash. A marketplace architecture and landscape design presentation is expected to take place at 5:30 p.m.

USCG 17th District Change of Command

By Karen Robes Meeks

In a recent ceremony in Juneau, Alaska, Rear Adm. Michael McAllister transferred command of the US Coast Guard’s 17th District to Rear Adm. Matthew Bell. He will oversee operations in the district’s 3.8 million square miles and over 47,300 miles of shoreline throughout Alaska, the North Pacific and the Arctic.

Bell previously served as commander of the US Coast Guard Personnel Service Center in Washington, DC, and is a designated permanent cutterman with more than a dozen years of service with command tours of Coast Guard cutters Alex Haley and Douglas Munro.

“Having been stationed in Alaska before, I’m excited to be back to serve the people of the Last Frontier,” said Bell. “I’m looking forward to leading the dedicated men and women of the 17th District and building upon the firm foundation of service laid before me by my predecessors.”

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

California Hopes to Ramp Up Emissions Regulations

By Karen Robes Meeks

In a narrow 7 to 6 vote that will likely have major industry and environmental consequences to Southern California, South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) board members agreed to consider new rules aimed at curbing pollution from the ports, warehouses, airports, rail yards and new development.

A proposed indirect source rule is being developed for warehouses, rail yards and construction projects by the SCAQMD, the air pollution control agency for Orange County and much of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties. The indirect source rule seeks to regulate pollution coming from vehicles linked to a facility, such as trucks serving a warehouse or ships ferrying cargo to and from ports.

Meanwhile, SCAQMD will be working with the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to enact emission-lowering measures in the port’s Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP) and helping the area’s five major airports to commit to their own CAAPs that would include efforts to lower emissions coming from non-aircraft sources.

Some weren’t thrilled with the decision.

"It would be akin to Vons or Whole Foods telling their customers you can only shop at their store if you’re willing to drive a Chevy Volt there," Thomas Jelenic, the vice president of the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, told KPCC radio.

“When it comes to meeting clean air standards, an ‘all of the above’ approach must be taken, and these measures could have the potential to further reduce emissions in some of the communities hardest hit by air pollution,” said Wayne Nastri, SCAQMD’s executive officer.

“Every sector and industry must do its fair share to clean up the air we breathe,” Nastri added. “At the same time, we are committed to a transparent process that is sensitive to the impacts of any new requirements on the region’s businesses, jobs and overall economy.”

Olympia Gets Acting Executive

By Karen Robes Meeks

Airport Director Rudy Rudolph was appointed to serve as acting executive director of the Port of Olympia after the Port Commission voted to put Executive Director Ed Galligan on administrative leave in late April.

“The Commission is undertaking a thorough review of the Port’s leadership going forward and believes that its action today will permit it to fully evaluate its options,” according to the port, adding that Rudolph will act in the role “until further notice.”

According to The Olympian, Commissioner Joe Downing said in an email to constituents that the decision was based on a need for change, not an error or mistake.

“It is with heavy heart, but strong resolve, that we, the port commission, placed Ed Galligan on administrative leave last night.” He added “We thank him for his leadership over these years. But, [it is] time for a change. There are new challenges and that requires new leadership. The three commissioners are on the same page.”

Galligan had led the port since 2005.