Friday, November 2, 2018

New Matson Marshall Islands Service

By Karen Robes Meeks

In a move to lower cargo transit times by as many as eight days, Honolulu-based Matson, Inc. has started a new direct service between Honolulu and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

The company has acquired a 700-TEU vessel with two 45-ton onboard cranes for the new service, which will visit ports in Kwajalein, Ebeye and Majuro every 17 days. The vessel is expected to arrive at Kwajalein on Nov. 3.

"Matson has been consistently rated the No. 1 ocean carrier in the world because of its commitment to operating the fastest and most reliable service in the markets we serve," said Matson Chief Commercial Officer John Lauer. “We are excited to bring US flag service and shorter transit times from the US West Coast to Kwajalein, Ebeye and Majuro.”

Hueneme Sets New Cargo Record

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Hueneme handled 1.6 million tons of cargo in fiscal year 2018, an “all-time high” for import and export movement at the port.

That represents an 8.1 percent jump from last year’s 1.48 million cargo tons and beats the 1.56 million cargo tons record set in fiscal year 2015, according to the port.

“This has been a tremendous year for our Port community, with more cargo than ever before passing through our seaport,” said Oxnard Harbor District President Mary Anne Rooney, who announced the record year at a recent Board of Commissioners meeting.

“This is a testament to the collaboration between our customers, community partners, and stakeholders to move cargo in the most efficient ways possible,” she said.

The port – which serves as the West Coast hub for the Chiquita, Del Monte and One Banana brands – is attributing the record to rises in almost all cargo imports and exports, including a 50 percent spike in pineapples and melons and a five percent jump in banana imports.

“A five percent increase in banana imports may not sound like a big deal, but when you take into account that we import over 3.3 billion bananas a year, that percentage increase can make a significant impact on our overall cargo tonnage,” said Oxnard Harbor District Commissioner Jason Hodge. “And we’ve done this all while leading the industry in environmental initiatives and being named the Greenest Port in the United States.”

Long Beach Community Grants

By Karen Robes Meeks

About 130 groups aimed at supporting the arts, the environment and historic preservation have been awarded a total of $463,750 in community sponsorship grants from the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners.

They include the Friends of the Los Angeles River, the Long Beach Public Library Foundation, Su Casa’s Gala of Light and Willmore City Heritage Association’s Winter in Willmore Snow Day.

“Supporting organizations that make our diverse city a great place to live and work is just one of the ways the Harbor Commission seeks to contribute to our community,” said Board of Harbor Commissioners President Tracy Egoscue. “We’re proud that we have the opportunity to interact with the public and bring awareness of the important role the Port plays in this region.”

Port of Seattle Endorses Carbon Tax

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Seattle Commission has formally endorsed Washington State Initiative 1631, which would charge a carbon “pollution fee” on greenhouse gas pollutants sources and pay for efforts to curb pollution, promote clean energy, and address climate impacts.

The statewide initiative is in line with the port’s environmental goals and its Century Agenda to be “the greenest and most energy efficient port in North America.”

"For these reasons, the Port of Seattle welcomes the opportunity to be part of the broad coalition of supporters who strongly endorse the adoption of Initiative Measure No. 1631. We look forward to working with the state and legislative leaders who will ultimately decide how best to fund the reduction of harmful emissions and to help further our state’s leadership in establishing a path toward a sustainable future, an extract from the Port of Seattle Commission’s statement in support of motion 2018-13 read.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Subarus Reach Hueneme

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Hueneme received its first shipment of Subaru autos imported from Japan this month, thanks to Wallenius Wilhelmsen Solutions (WWS) as they brought the business to the Southern California port.

The processing of the new imported cargo will take place at the WWS facility on Hueneme Road at Edison Drive. The move, which allows WWS to better serve regional markets, including Southern California, Nevada and New Mexico, will add 35 new full-time and 25 new part-time local jobs, according to the port.

“WWS has been a long-time customer of the port, and we will continue to work with them to increase opportunity for growth,” said Oxnard Harbor District President Mary Anne Rooney. “The more our customers see these growth opportunities, the more good paying jobs we see being created for our local residents.”

Grays Harbor Begins Search for Commissioner

By Karen Robes Meeks

The search to fill the Port of Grays Harbor District 2 Commissioner seat left vacant following the sudden passing of Jack Thompson began on Oct. 29.

Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on Nov. 9. Candidates must include proof of voter registration within Grays Harbor County District 2 and proof of residency from the Grays Harbor County Auditor’s Office. Complete application can be submitted by sending an email to or delivering it in person to either the port’s main office located at 111 S. Wooding Street, Aberdeen, WA 98520 or to the Westport Marina’s main office located at 326 Lamb Street, Westport, WA 98595.

The commission will meet on Nov. 13 to review candidates’ qualifications. Finalists will be interviewed at 5:30 p.m. on Nov. 26 during a Special Commission meeting. The commission is expected to vote to select a candidate on Nov. 27 at 3 p.m. This short-term appointment will run until the next port regular scheduled election in November 2019. At that point, the elected candidate will serve a full-term through Dec. 31, 2023.

Visit for more information on the commission process and application procedure.

Matson Announces Dividend

By Karen Robes Meeks

Honolulu-based carrier Matson, Inc.’s Board of Directors recently announced a fourth quarter dividend of $0.21 per common share, which is expected to be paid on Dec. 6 to shareholders of record as of Nov. 8, according to the company.

Established in 1882, Matson Inc. provides services to Hawaii, Alaska, and Guam, and to other island economies in Micronesia. It also operates services from China to Southern California and to Okinawa, Japan as well as various islands in the South Pacific.

Matson Logistics, founded in 1987, broadens the reach of the company's transportation network throughout the continental US with its integrated, asset-light logistics services.

Columbia River Sheen Investigation

By Karen Robes Meeks

Members of the US Coast Guard, the Washington Department of Ecology and Oregon Department of Environment Quality investigated what appeared to be a large sheen on the Columbia River.

According to the Coast Guard, the sheen may have originated near Kalama, Wash. It was first discovered by crew at the Temco grain terminal and that of the 193-foot hopper dredge Yaquina.

Boats were deployed to collect samples and track the movement and size of the sheen, which had traveled down the river before reaching Longview and stretched about three miles long.

“The information from both overflights indicates to responders that the source is no longer actively discharging into the river. Responders assessed the oil in the water and determined it is too thin to recover, as well as confirmed it is dissipating,” according to the agency.

The Coast Guard pointed out that area wildlife did not appear to be distressed.