Friday, April 5, 2019

Join the Parade!

Commercial working vessels and other decorated vessels representing their companies are warmly invited to participate in Seattle's Opening Day on May 4th.

Featured especially this year will the Lake Union Drydock Company, celebrating their 100th Anniversary, with a flotilla of vessels they have built over the years.

Registration is required by 4/25/2019.

For more information see or contact Dan Barr at 206-285-1111.

Maui Harbor Office Moves

By Karen Robes Meeks

The completion of the Hawaii Department of Transportation’s state-funded $7.5 million Harbors Maui District Office Relocation project was feted with a ceremony blessing March 27.

Efforts to relocate the office began in 2012 after an assessment study on how to best use the land at Kahului Harbor determined that moving the Harbors Maui District Office to the Old Kahului Railroad Building A on Kaahumanu Avenue and letting others use adjacent Buildings B and C would be a more efficient, less congested use.

The project involved updating the building’s utilities and systems while preserving the historic architectural features of the old Kahului Railroad Building.

“Kahului Harbor is our state’s third largest port, and these improvements are essential to increase operational efficiency and improve conditions for Harbors personnel,” said Gov. David Ige.

Camas-Washougal Tenant Forum

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Camas-Washougal recently organized its first Industrial Park Tenant Forum, an event that updated tenants on projects that may affect their business and discuss ways to minimize impacts. It’s also a chance to get feedback from tenants.

Among the items discussed at this first meeting – which took place at 54/40 Brewing – included: the realignment of the Steigerwald Lake levee; construction on Highway 14 at 15th and 32nd Street, ongoing Steigerwald Commerce Center development and stormwater management, according to the port.

“Whether the projects are port- or city-related improvements, we believe that communication is the key to success,” according to the port.

Alaska Oil Response Exercise

By Karen Robes Meeks

This week, the US Coast Guard Sector Juneau conducted an oil spill response exercise on the water in Hawk Inlet and at the University of Alaska Southeast Student Recreation Center.

The exercise brought together folks from the Coast Guard, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, Oldendorff Carriers, Hecla Greens Creek Mine and Southeast Alaska Petroleum Response Organization to deal with an imagery pollution scenario involving a vessel collision near Hawk Inlet on Admiralty Island.

“This exercise will allow us to practice for a potential pollution event within Southeast Alaska waters and improve upon our response strategies,” said Kathy Hamblett, senior exercise controller for Coast Guard Sector Juneau. “The timing of this exercise, only two weeks after the 30th anniversary of the Exxon Valdez spill, provides excellent perspective for the importance of preparedness.”

Long Beach Pulse of the Ports

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Long Beach recently hosted its 15th annual Pulse of the Ports Peak Season Forecast, gathering industry experts and stakeholders for an outlook on trade for this year.

Among those on the panel was Melissa Peralta, senior economist and forecaster for TTX, a Chicago-based railcar pooling firm.

She spoke of a projected 1.8 percent increase in North American imports this year, slower than last year’s 6.1 percent growth in US imports in 2018, according to the port.

This slowdown in growth comes as retailers moved quickly to ship goods ahead of a tariff increase that was expected to start in late 2018 and early this year but never happened, she said.

She said a slowing US economy and the effects of the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 may affect imports later in this year, and added that the US economy overall will grow 2.7 percent this year, according to the port. “Economic fundamentals should continue to be supportive into 2019, albeit at a moderating pace,” Peralta said. “But imports may struggle to keep pace with overall economic growth due to an overhang of freight delivered in late 2018.”

Even though East Coast ports have seen an increase in Asian imports in the last 10 years, West Coast ports may see that business return when the International Maritime Organization enacts on Jan. 1 that container vessels must lower the sulfur content in their fuel from 3.5 percent to 0.5 percent, she said.

For a recap of the event, visit

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

New President for Cook Inlet Tug & Barge

By Karen Robes Meeks

Maritime industry leader Jeff Johnson will be the new president of Cook Inlet Tug & Barge (CIBT) effective June 2019. Johnson comes to Cook Inlet - an independently managed Foss Maritime Company subsidiary - after 16 years with ARCO and BP Shipping, where he last served as director and general manager of BP Maritime Services. Based in Singapore he led the provision of crewing and maritime talents for BP Shipping and BP Group globally.

“We conducted an extensive search to find an established and renowned industry leader; a person that will continue the growth trajectory at Cook Inlet Tug & Barge,” said John Parrott, President and CEO of Foss Maritime. “Jeff’s impressive background, coupled with his strong desire to return to Alaska, made him the perfect choice to lead CITB in serving our customers and communities around the state.”

Johnson’s career began in Alaska’s fishing industry. After working with ARCO marine’s tanker fleet and Polar tankers, he moved on to ConocoPhillips in 2003 as a marine superintendent. He later became the fleet operations manager responsible for the international and US-flagged tanker fleets and their US inland tug and barge fleet.

He joined BP in Alaska as the BP Shipping marine affairs advisor in 2007, before becoming the assurance capability manager in 2010, serving as the interface to BP’s Upstream in the Americas. He continued to rise through the ranks, becoming manager of environmental and external affairs in 2012, then president of BP Shipping in 2014.

“Foss and CITB have been in the process of expanding our fleet,” said Parrott. “With the addition of assets along the North Slope, and the relocation of vessels to the area, we are committed to continuing to expand our service offering throughout the region. Jeff’s ability to manage every aspect of projects, to interface with regulatory groups, and to identify talent and opportunities makes him the ideal person to lead our ongoing investment in Alaska.”

Lynden Moves Statue

By Karen Robes Meeks

Lynden companies played a significant role in bringing a life-size bronze statue of the late Alaska Senator Ted Stevens to his namesake airport in Anchorage, Alaska. The statue was unveiled Feb. 23.

Lynden – which had a long relationship with Stevens – assisted with customs for shipment of materials from China and shipped materials from Los Angeles to Alaska for the backdrop of the statue.

Alaska Marine Lines picked up the clay form from the artist Joan Bugbee Jackson in Cordova, Alaska for transport to Seattle before delivering it to a foundry in Oregon for bronzing. Lynden Transport was there for the remaining part of the statue’s journey to back to Alaska and stored it in Anchorage until final installation could take place.

"This is such a wonderful tribute to the Senator who truly loved Alaskans and shaped our state," says Jeanine St. John, Vice President of Lynden Logistics.

Long Beach Seeks Input on Noise and Air Quality

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Long Beach is seeking proposal for parks projects that would help dampen port-related noise and air quality issues in adjacent neighborhoods. Chosen projects will be funded through the Community Grants Program.

So far, the program has awarded more than $8 million in grants. Paired with a previous grant program, the port has contributed $25.8 million to local environmental initiatives.

Concept papers must be submitted online. The application deadline is 4 p.m. on May 1.

For more details on the program’s guidelines, visit

State of the Coast Guard Address

By Karen Robes Meeks

In his first State of the Coast Guard address, Adm. Karl Schultz announced several initiatives and plans, especially for Southern California.

Speaking from Coast Guard Base Los Angeles-Long Beach in San Pedro, Shultz said presence will be heightened in Southern California with the building of a new air station at Ventura County Naval Station – the homeporting of the service’s first two new Offshore Patrol Cutters at Base Los Angeles-Long Beach in 2021 – and four new Fast Response Cutters in Los Angeles.

“As Congress makes tough fiscal decisions and looks at the best ways to spend the nation’s precious resources, there’s not a better return on investment in government than the United States Coast Guard,” said Schultz.