Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Port of Long Beach Launches WAVE Report

Port of Long Beach officials hope to help supply chain stakeholders better address cargo flow challenges with the launch of a new data report.

The Weekly Advance Volume Estimate, or WAVE, is expected to publish every Monday with cargo volume projections and vessel calls weeks in advance, as well as export, import and empty container estimates, the port said.

“We’ve created the WAVE report to provide our goods movement stakeholders with up-to-date forecast data to use in their planning process,” said Port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “Sharing this information is highly beneficial for the supply chain, especially as we cope with both seasonal and unanticipated peaks and valleys in cargo volume.” The WAVE report is available at www.polb.com/wavereport and posted on the port’s LinkedIn and Twitter accounts.

Mariner Credentials Extended Due to COVID-19

In light of COVID-19’s impact on the seafaring industry, U.S. Coast Guard officials are extending credential deadlines and easing enforcement on certain requirements, the agency announced Dec. 22.

Even though extensions are in place, Coast Guard officials are encouraging mariners to meet requirements as soon as possible to avoid lapses, especially since officials anticipate a backlog of processing credentials and course approvals. Mariners should also be aware that expiring merchant mariner credentials can only be extended up to one year.

For Merchant Mariner Credentials, national endorsements that expire between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 have been extended until Oct. 31, 2021 or one year after the initial expiration date printed on the credential, whichever is earlier. Those working on expired credentials that qualify for the extension criteria need to carry the expired credentials with the extension notice.

MMCs with STCW Endorsements ending between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 have been extended until Oct. 31, 2021 or one year after the initial expiration date on the credential, whichever occurs first. Those working on expired credentials that qualify for the extension criteria need to carry the expired credentials with the extension notice.

Until Oct. 31, 2021, the Coast Guard will accept “shipboard experience in fire, emergency, and/or abandon ship drills for demonstrating continued competence in PSC, PSC-Ltd, FRB, BT, and/or AFF provided mariners have obtained at least 360 days of relevant service within the past five years.” This applies to mariners who meet initial competency requirements in “survival craft and rescue boats other than fast rescue boats (PSC), PSC-limited, fast rescue boats (FRB), basic training (BT), and advanced firefighting (AFF) and who are renewing MMCs that expire between March 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021.”

If mariners don’t have at least one year of relevant service in the last five years, they can only renew their STCW endorsements by showing their ongoing competence for “PSC, PSC-Ltd, FRB, BT, and/or AFF as specified in 46 CFR 12.613(b)(4) or 46 CFR 12.615(b)(4) and NVIC 04-14 (for PSC and PSC-Ltd); 46 CFR 12.617(b)(4) and NVIC 05-15 (for FRB); 46 CFR 11.302(e), 12.602(e), and NVIC 08-14 (for BT); and/or 46 CFR 11.303(e) and NVIC 09-14 (for AFF).” They must finish their original or refresher training for PSC, PSC-Ltd, FRB, BT, and/or AFF, according to the USCG. Anything less won’t be accepted.

National, pilot, or STCW medical certifications ending between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 will be extended until Oct. 31, 2021 or one year after the expiration date printed on the certificate, whichever occurs first.

Until Oct. 31, 2021, the Coast Guard won’t enforce the requirement that pilots need a current annual physical exam certificate while holding a credential. Those working on expired medical certificates that qualify for the extension criteria need to have the expired certificate with a copy of this notice. This nonenforcement only applies to the requirement of carrying a current STCW medical certificate and not the actual medical standards. Those with disqualifying medical conditions should not sail, the USCG said.

Regional Exam Centers and Monitoring Units (except for Monitoring Unit Guam) are now open only for exams with limited seating in accordance with CDC guidelines. Approval to Test Letters and Course Completion Certificates expiring March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 have been extended to Oct. 31, 2021.

Course and program approvals ending between Jan. 1, 2020 and Dec. 31, 2020, have been extended for six months from their date of expiration. The National Maritime Center’s internal records will reflect the current status of acceptance of course completion certificates issued during the extension. The center will work toward alternate ways to deliver training and testing. Mariners can request alternate methods to NMCCourses@uscg.mil. They should include in the email “a list of courses, a complete description of the alternative requested, the tools involved, and the business process to be employed.”

Visit https://www.uscg.mil/nmc/ for more.

Port of Oakland to Welcome Cranes

Oakland’s biggest cranes for loading and unloading massive container vessels will soon be assembled at the Port of Oakland, officials said.

The three massive cranes commissioned for $30 million by Stevedoring Services of America for its Oakland International Container Terminal - OICT have traveled all the way from Shanghai-based ZPMC and will replace three older cranes.

“There’s no better demonstration of our maritime partner’s faith in the Port of Oakland, than investing in these huge ship-to-shore cranes,” said Port Maritime Director Bryan Brandes.

With a lift height of 174 feet above the dock, the new cranes would be able to reach 225 feet across a ship’s deck and be over 400 feet above the wharf when the crane booms are raised, according to SSA.

“These cranes will keep the Port of Oakland competitive so that we can continue to attract the largest vessels calling on North America,” said Port Executive Director Danny Wan. “Ultimately, bigger cranes at our waterfront translate into maritime and related jobs for the region.”

USCG Responds to Oil Discharge in Kodiak, Alaska

The U.S. Coast Guard announced that it is addressing a recent hydraulic oil discharge in Womens Bay in Kodiak, Alaska.

Coast Guard Cutter SPAR crew members were the first to report the discharge that came from a tank that can hold up to about 914 gallons, according to the agency. It is unknown how much oil has been spilled, but the source has been secured and the cause of the spill is being investigated, USCG said. Meanwhile, Kodiak members had been overseeing the cleanup by Choctaw Defense Services, which had been contracted to do the work. Boom systems, absorbent pads, a skimmer and vac truck were being used in the cleanup.

“Our primary focus is on mitigating potential impacts to the environment,” said Petty Officer 2nd Class Joshua Thorne, a pollution responder from MSD Kodiak.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Matson Takes Delivery of Ship

Matson, Inc. was delivered its second Kanaloa Class combination container/roll-on, roll-off vessel, the Honolulu-based carrier announced Friday.

The new 870 foot-long vessel, Matsonia, was one of a pair of Kanaloa Class con-ro ships constructed by General Dynamics NASSCO. It joins sister ship Lurline, which was put into service last January. Both weigh more than 50,000 metric tons, feature an enclosed garage large enough to accommodate about 500 vehicles, plus room for rolling stock and breakbulk cargo.

Matsonia and Lurline, as well as Philly Shipyard-built container vessels Daniel K Inouye and Kaimana Hila, are key in Matson’s efforts to modernize its Hawaii service, the company said.

"Putting four new ships into service in a three-year span is a significant accomplishment that culminates eight years of planning, project management and coordination for teams across many departments at Matson," said Matt Cox, chairman and chief executive officer. "Together with the modernization and expansion of our Honolulu terminal, these investments position Matson to provide efficient, reliable service to Hawaii for decades to come."

NWSA Accepts EPA Grant for
Cargo-Handling Equipment

The Northwest Seaport Alliance members recently accepted a $782,482 EPA grant that will help the operator of the South Intermodal Yard in Tacoma, Rail Management Services, to turn its six diesel-powered terminal tractors into battery-electric tractors.

This grant will pave the way for the installation of the gateway’s first permanent deployment of electric cargo-handling equipment, said John McCarthy, Port of Tacoma commission president and co-chair of The Northwest Seaport Alliance.

“Through our partnership with (Rail Management Services) and Tacoma Power, these upgrades will replace nearly 23,000 gallons of diesel fuel with clean electricity annually, resulting in reductions of diesel particulate matter emissions of 1.4 tons per year and 260 tons of greenhouse gas,” he said.

RMS has 10 vehicles with a mix of Tier 2 and Tier 3 non-road diesel engines.

“As an intermodal provider operating more than 50 terminals and performing over 9,000,000 lifts a year, Rail Management Services consistently refines its operations to find the most innovative and cost-effective assets available,” said Ed Morgenthaler, vice president of Rail Management Services. “With our decades long standing relationship at the Port of Tacoma and with NWSA, RMS is proud to be included in this electric hostler venture which will reduce emissions and create a safer, cleaner environment for our employees.”

USCG Cutter Jupiter Arrives in Oahu

After a twelve-month Major Maintenance Availability mission in Baltimore and a 7,000-mile journey over 30 days, crew members of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Juniper have arrived in Oahu just in time for the holidays.

Crew members of the Juniper, which is expected to replace the CGC Walnut, have been working since September on $21.1 million of work to retrofit and install equipment at the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, according to the USCG.

“The entire crew of the Juniper worked tirelessly at the Coast Guard Yard to ensure the cutter was ready for sea within only a few weeks following the conclusion of a year-long Major Maintenance Availability,” said Lt. Stephen Atwell, executive officer of the Juniper. “We were able to sail the Juniper with an on-schedule arrival to the Hawaiian Islands, where we will ready the cutter to support operations within Oceania, ranging from conducting our primary mission of aids to navigation to combating illegal and unreported fishing activities along with search and rescue.”

Port of Oakland Releases November
Cargo Numbers

In November, the Port of Oakland saw a slight uptick of 0.9 percent in imported cargo and a 2.6 percent drop in exports when compared to the same time last year, according to new numbers released by the port earlier this month.

The Northern California seaport handled 78,045 TEUs in imports and 79,667 TEUs in loaded exports.

So far, the port has moved 197,692 TEUs in overall cargo this year, 0.2 percent uptick from the same time frame in 2019 with 197,360 TEUs, according to the port.

While import demand is strong in the U.S., Oakland’s November import numbers were not as high as it should be because of congestion at Southern California ports, cargo backups and ship delays, officials said. This meant fewer containers through Oakland last month.

“The cargo is there, it’s just delayed,” said Port of Oakland Maritime Director Bryan Brandes. “We expect to see higher import cargo volume numbers this month compared to December 2019.”

Meanwhile, empty containers needed for restocking goods are in high demand to meet growing import volumes. “The Port of Oakland is working closely with ocean carriers, importers, freight forwarders, agricultural exporters, and container providers to help facilitate communications and solutions for any equipment shortages,” Brandes said.

Friday, December 18, 2020

Cargo Volumes up at Port of Los Angeles

The Port of Los Angeles saw a 22 percent jump in cargo year over year when the nation’s busiest seaport moved 889,746 TEUs last month, according to new numbers released Monday. Imports for November were up 25 percent to 464,820 TEUs, while exports dipped 5.5 percent to 130,917 TEUs. Empty containers - many returning to Asia - rose 34.2 percent to 294,010 TEUs last month when compared to the same time last year.

More spending by consumers, holiday shipments and warehouse restocking have been driving the increased numbers in recent months, according to the port.

“Since August, monthly cargo volume has averaged almost 930,000 TEUs,” said Port Executive Director Gene Seroka. “It’s unusual to see this kind of import activity this late in the year. But 2020 has been anything but normal.”

With consumers continuing to stay at home and buy goods rather than services, the port expects robust activity at the port for at least several months, Seroka said.

“To help stakeholders manage the cargo influx, the port has introduced new data tools for asset planning, provided additional land for chassis and containers, and is working with cargo owners large and small to prioritize their shipments.”

USNS Fisher Arrives at Port of Vancouver USA

On Saturday, USNS Fisher, a 951-foot long vessel with the Military Sealift Command, dropped anchor at the Port of Vancouver USA, where Fisher will call home for the next nine months, the port announced.

The vessel, which will be based at berths 13 and 14, allows the military to quickly load and unload Army vehicles and large equipment. MSC oversees 125 civilian-crewed ships including Fisher and conducts “specialized missions, strategic pre-positioning combat cargo at sea and moving military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners,” according to the port.

“For the Port of Vancouver to host the USNS Fisher for an extended period of time is an honor and shows the aptitude of the port and the capabilities of the Columbia River,” said Alex Strogen, chief commercial officer for the port. “With a 43-foot shipping channel and the infrastructure capable of safely mooring the vessel, supplying necessary utilities and the low-cost of electricity in this area, the Port of Vancouver USA is a dynamic establishment that builds upon the Columbia River’s international maritime hub.”

For more, go to www.sealiftcommand.com.

USCG, Border Patrol Conduct Joint Effort Along U.S.-Canadian Border

The U.S. Coast Guard recently teamed up with Border Patrol members near Southeast Alaska and the Canadian border to ensure border security and motor vessel safety and raise awareness among mariners on border crossing requirements.

Crew members of Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak HC-130J Super Hercules transported Border Patrol agents and equipment from Anchorage to Juneau, while Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew members pointed out vessels of interest to the Border Patrol and Coast Guard members that were on Coast Guard Station Juneau 45-foot Response Boat-Medium.

Crew members jointly accomplished four boardings to discuss vessel safety and rules related to U.S.-Canadian border crossings, including those pertaining to the Taku Inlet. Mariners need to turn in proper Notice of Arrival information per federal regulations when they come from a foreign port, according to the USCG.

"Partnerships between federal, state, tribal and other local agencies are necessary to provide an enforcement presence across Alaska's expansive geographic and maritime domain," said Lt. Jeff Schoknecht, Sector Juneau enforcement officer. "These joint operations improve training and establish more efficient tactics and techniques that enables greater search and rescue and law enforcement responses."

Port of Long Beach Offer Sponsorships

Nearly $400,000 in sponsorship funds have been approved by the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners, the body that governs the Port of Long Beach.

The funds will pay for 89 community events and projects, including CityHeART’s COVID-19 and Me Virtual Storytelling Workshop, the Andy Street Community Association’s Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow: A Black History Project, and the Long Beach Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business Recovery and Resiliency Program Series, according to the port.

“We’re proud to continue our commitment to the community through our robust sponsorship program,” said Port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “Supporting these organizations is especially important as we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Over $9 million in sponsorships have been awarded by the port since 2007.

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

USCG Encourages Fishermen to Practice
Vessel Safety

As Dungeness crab season opens Dec. 16, commercial fishermen can safeguard from emergencies by practicing vessel safety, said the U.S. Coast Guard.

Before crossing a restricted bar between sunset and sunrise, commercial fishermen should alert the Coast Guard on VHF-FM channel 16 or 22A and offer the name of the vessel name, location, number of people aboard, where the vessel is going and any limitations. They also need to report whether the vessel had a safe transit after crossing.

On deck, everyone should wear life jackets or immersion suits when crossing a restricted bar. They must be worn by all persons on deck, or located in any open areas of the vessel while crossing a restricted bar. Not complying may mean up to $25,000 in fines, according to the USCG.

“Without a doubt, Dungeness crab fishermen are anxious to start the 2020-21 commercial crab fishing season,” said Lt. Carl Eschler, the assistant chief of the investigations division at Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Portland. “Be it their first time or 101st time navigating over a bar, fishermen are encouraged to contact their local Coast Guard station to familiarize themselves with bar conditions and reporting methods. Contacting the Coast Guard prior to crossing a restricted bar between sunset and sunrise is more than just a good idea for commercial fishermen, it is a requirement."

This year, Marine Safety Unit Portland officials have answered more than 95 commercial fishing vessel-related marine casualties, or “non-standard event that disrupts normal operations; like an emergency, accident, collision or damage involving a vessel” in domestic waters, the agency said.

AAPA Urges Federal Leaders to Help
Maritime Sector

The American Association of Port Authorities recently joined other maritime organizations in urging Congress and Treasury Secretary Steven Munchin to aid the hard-hit maritime industry with $3.5 billion in COVID-19 relief funding.

“America’s maritime transportation system, including its ports and their direct workforce of more than 650,000 front-line personnel, have kept essential goods moving to medical professionals, first responders and vital manufacturing, distribution and retail businesses during the pandemic,” said AAPA President and CEO Christopher J. Connor. “Their dedication and perseverance has enabled commerce to continue flowing during a time of great risk, upheaval, stress and greatly increased costs, allowing millions of Americans to safely and comfortably work from home.”

Despite trade upticks at major U.S. seaports, most ports continue to suffer financially, especially those that don’t handle containers such as steel, grain and other bulk commodities, Connor said.

“The relief we’re seeking is about ensuring ports and other maritime transportation businesses are able to keep pace with the accelerating costs of protecting their workers while keeping their workforce employed, and maintaining a state of readiness so they can significantly aid in the nation’s eventual economic recovery,” Connor said.

NOAA’s 15th Arctic Report Card Released

Earlier this month, NOAA released the findings of its 15th Arctic Report Card.

The report card, generated from the input of 133 scientists from 15 countries, reports that increasingly warm temperatures continue to affect the Arctic. For example, the Eurasian Arctic saw its lowest June snow extent in the last 54 years, a result of high temperatures felt this past spring across Siberia. Moreover, the second-warmest average annual land-surface air temperature in the Arctic since 1900 was observed between October 2019 and September 2020. The report also shows that the Arctic ice has become thinner and more fragile in the last 10 years. This year’s Arctic minimum sea ice extent was reached in September, the second-lowest in satellite record, according to NOAA.

“The transformation of the Arctic to a warmer, less frozen and biologically changed region is well underway,” said Rick Thoman, Alaska Climate Specialist with the International Arctic Research Center, and one of the report card’s editors.

For more, visit https://arctic.noaa.gov/report-card/report-card-2020.

POLA Trade Director Honored

Port of Los Angeles Director of Trade Development Marisela Caraballo DiRuggiero was recently named Global Trade Catalyst of the Year by the Los Angeles Chapter of Women in International Trade.

The award honored the leadership and experience of DiRuggiero, who has been with the seaport for almost 20 years. In her capacity, DiRuggiero leads the port’s Trade Development Division and the award-winning program Trade Connect, which helps small and midsize companies expand their business.

“I’m thrilled to see Marisela recognized for her hard work, dedication and contributions to promoting and expanding trade through our Port, the busiest in the Western Hemisphere,” said Los Angeles Harbor Commissioner President Jaime Lee. “With her help and expertise, the Port of Los Angeles has gained enormous influence on the world stage and is recognized around the globe for its leadership in many critical aspects of trade and commerce.”

Friday, December 11, 2020

Cargo Numbers Up at Port of Long Beach

About 783,523 TEUs came through the Port of Long Beach last month, giving the seaport its busiest November ever, according to statistics released Wednesday.

The port is attributing the demand for PPEs and holiday goods for the latest cargo numbers, which soared 30.6 percent from the same time a year ago. November imports rose 30.5 percent to 382,677 TEUs, while exports fell 5.2 percent to 117,283 TEUs year over year. Empty containers were up 55 percent to 283,563 TEUs.

“Online shopping and PPE purchases are on the rise as consumers continue the stay-at-home lifestyle, but the overall economic outlook is uncertain with another wave of COVID-19 spreading across the country,” said Port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “We’re dealing with the surge in containers by partnering with stakeholders, utilizing a temporary storage yard and prioritizing dual transaction truck trips that balance inbound and outbound cargo flows.”

So far, the port has handled nearly 7.3 million TEUs this year, 4.7 percent more cargo than last year. For more, visit polb.com/statistics.

AAPA Urges Vaccine Priority for Supply Chain Workers

Supply chain workers should be considered for priority access to COVID-19 vaccines, the American Association of Port Authorities and cargo transportation organizations wrote in a letter to federal leaders.

The groups wrote to the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation, and the Subcommittee on Transport & Safety that giving industry workers access will help prevent supply chain delays.

“Prioritizing vaccinations for freight, rail, port and energy workers will be a key intervention to help keep our critical supply chains operating, and to reinforce the resilience of our transportation networks,” according to the letter.

Over 650,000 people account for the supply chain workforce that moves goods vital to combatting the pandemic, said AAPA President and CEO Christopher J. Connor.

“Their dedication and perseverance has enabled commerce to continue flowing during a time of great risk to their personal health and well-being, ensuring the goods we want and need are available when and where we need them,” Connor said.

Lynden Moves Alaska Bison

Lynden Transport recently helped to deliver three bison bulls from Yellowstone National Park to the Alutiiq Tribe of Old Harbor, Alaska, the company said.

The bulls - which were given to bolster the genetic diversity of the tribe’s herd - journeyed from Montana to Seattle by plane to Anchorage then on a 20-foot container to Homer Spit before riding via boat to Sitkalidak on Kodiak Island.

"Our herd is managed to provide food security for our community of 230 residents and tribal members throughout the state," Cynthia Berns, Vice President of Community Affairs for the Old Harbor Native Corp., told Lynden. “In 2017, DNA testing was conducted on the herd, and it was suggested that we integrate new genes into the herd for long-term health and survival."

She contacted Lynden Transport’s Vice President of Alaska Sales Paul Friese for help.

“This was a very special project," said Friese. "We were happy to be involved and assist the Alutiiq Tribe."

USCG Cutter Polar Star Departs for Arctic

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star crew members recently embarked on its journey from Seattle to the Arctic to support maritime security and enforcement in the area, including the Maritime Boundary Line shared by the U.S. and Russia.

The Polar Star usually heads to Antarctica to annually support Operation Deep Freeze, which involves resupplying stations to help the National Science Foundation, but the mission was cancelled as a COVID-19 safety precaution. The 44-year-old heavy icebreaker will instead conduct enforcement of illegal fishing and be part of Arctic training to help develop new operators, the agency said.

Polar Star is poised to head into the cold, dark Arctic winter to carry out a historic mission,” said Capt. Bill Woitrya, the cutter’s commanding officer. “The ship is ready, and the crew is enthusiastic to embark on this adventure. We will defend U.S. interests in the region, and continue to hone our proficiency to operate in such a harsh, remote environment.”

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Port of Long Beach, Terminal Operators Team
for Two-Way Truck Deliveries

The Port of Long Beach, marine terminal operators, truck drivers and customers are teaming up to raise the frequency of “two-way” truck deliveries, the port announced recently.

In this collaboration, International Transportation Service, Long Beach Container Terminal, SSA Marine and Total Terminals International pledge to coordinate more situations in which a truck can deliver an export and then pick up an import in the same visit. Terminal operators are enhancing their appointment systems to allow more two-way transactions to happen. Trucking companies and drivers also are being encouraged to drop off an empty container before picking up a loaded import.

“Increasing the share of dual transactions will optimize truck deliveries, terminal appointments and chassis availability during this unprecedented time in the Port’s history,” said Port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “We recognize the Port’s unique advantage as Southern California’s gateway for trans-Pacific trade, and we are committed to leveraging those advantages for the benefit of all customers and stakeholders.”

The goal is making sure at least half of deliveries are two-way transactions. Some operators are already surpassing that goal with over 70 percent of moves being dual transactions.

“Working with the marine terminal operators to prioritize dual transactions for our truckers is another example of how the amazing partnerships at the Port of Long Beach work to provide stellar service to our customers,” said Long Beach Harbor Commission President Frank Colonna. “We hope this plan will cement our reputation as the Port of Choice for delivering cargo quickly, safely and efficiently.”

IBM to Create Cyber Resilience Center
at Port of L.A.

International Business Machines Corporation will develop and run a Port Cyber Resilience Center at the Port of Los Angeles, the port announced Monday.

Harbor commissioners recently voted on a $6.8 million, three-year contract with IBM to create a “system of systems.” Right now, businesses at the port handle cyber threats on their own. This center would help them work together to alert and combat those threats while maintaining their own data control and security procedures, the port said.

“As our port increasingly relies on data integration to guide its cargo operations and processes, detection and protection against cyber incidents is critical,” said Port Executive Director Gene Seroka. “This new Cyber Resilience Center will not only provide the port an early warning system against port-wide cyber attacks, but result in greater collective knowledge and data sharing throughout our entire port supply chain ecosystem.” IBM is honored to partner with the Port of Los Angeles on the center on strengthening its cyber preparedness, said Wendi Whitmore, Vice President, IBM Security X-Force.

“Now more than ever, there’s a critical need for global supply chains to operate securely and undisrupted,” she said. "As the Port of Los Angeles takes these significant steps to strengthen the cyber resilience of its ecosystem, we’re proud it selected IBM’s premier capabilities in threat intelligence, AI and cloud security to help achieve this."

Port of Everett Adds Norton Terminal
to Master Plan

Commissioners at the Port of Everett recently passed the Marine Terminals Master Plan Addendum, Appendix E, which includes the newly obtained 66-acre former Kimberly-Clark mill property, now called Norton Terminal. Norton Terminal will be key to the port’s Mills to Maritime effort to bolster and diversify cargo movement and economic activity in the area.

“This revised plan is ideally suited to leverage the Port’s investments in the South Terminal to market our facilities and our breakbulk niche to other customers and cargoes,” said Carl Wollebek, Chief of Operations for the port. “This additional upland maritime capacity is critical to our ability to go after cargoes that would add jobs and help spur economic recovery in Everett.”

After the site’s environmental remediation is completed by the former property owner, the new terminal is expected to open in 2022 and will mean over 800 direct jobs and millions in state and local taxes, according to the port.

USCG Lends Aid to Alaskan Landslide Incident

U.S. Coast Guard crews have been providing assistance since Thursday when landslides befell the town of Haines, Alaska.

For roughly eight hours, Coast Guard crews scoured a 35-square-foot nautical mile search area.

Station Juneau’s 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew was part of the effort to help.

“The partnerships throughout the multiple organizations involved in the response efforts for this disaster reflect how the Alaskan community comes together in times of need,” Said Capt. Stephen White, commander Coast Guard Sector Juneau. “We offer our condolences to all the residents of Haines who are affected.”

Coast Guard Cutter Anacapa is expected to stay to help with relief efforts and will continue to be in contact with Alaska State Troopers and Haines city officials. An emergency operations center is based at the Haines Fire Hall. For more reach out to EOC PIO Alekka Fullerton at 907-314-2230.

Friday, December 4, 2020

Dredging to Begin in Everett Harbor,
Snohomish River

Mariners should be mindful of the maintenance dredging expected to take place next week in Everett Harbor and Snohomish River.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Port of Everett are partnering on dredging the area’s lower channel and settling basin, which is set to start on Dec. 9, according to the port.

J.E. McAmis of Chico, California, has been contracted by the Army Corps of Engineers to do the work, which involves dredging roughly 65,000 cubic yards of material from the lower channel and about 100,000 cubic yards from the lower settling basin.

Mariners in the area should tread carefully and pass on the marina side of the dredge. They should also be mindful of the rig markings. The work will take place around the clock and is expected to be done by mid-February, the port said.

PNW Mariners: Winterize Your Vessels!

As the season gets colder in the Pacific Northwest, U.S. Coast Guard officials are encouraging mariners to winterize their boats, a move that bolsters boaters’ safety and the maritime community and surrounding environment and lengthens their boats’ longevity.

Poor winterization often results in sunken vessels and oil discharges, the USCG said.

The agency suggests removing extraneous gear and inspecting gear to make sure everything is up to date and working; draining bilge water or fresh water tanks, fittings and lines; getting rid of waste and materials such as oils, chemicals and batteries; disconnecting batteries, closing and securing doors, windows and covers; and double-checking moorings before departing.

“If the boat is taken out of the water, shrink wrapping the vessel is also an option,” according to the agency. “Sealing the vessel is extremely important in preventing capsizing due to heavy rainfall or icing.”

Lynden Delivers “Clinic in a Can” to Alaska

The small Western Alaskan community of Naknek recently received vital medical services, thanks to “Clinic in a Can,” a mobile medical center delivered by Lynden Air Cargo.

“Clinic in a Can” started with a doctor who wanted to reimagine 20-foot containers into emergency clinics for third-world countries, Lynden said. Putting the project together was Ethan Bradford, Lynden Air Cargo's Vice President of Technical Operations.

The clinic was moved from Wichita to Tacoma by Alaska West Express, then shipped to Anchorage, where Lynden Air Cargo got it to its final destination at King Salmon's Camai Community Health Center.

"Protecting workers, Alaskans and our communities during the fishing season and year-round continues to be an important challenge in our state's COVID response," Camai Health Center Executive Director Mary Swain told Lynden, adding that she wants two more clinics for the region. "We received grant money to purchase the mobile clinic, and we can transport it to wherever it is needed most."

AAPA Releases 2021 Series of Maritime Events

In 2021, the American Association of Port Authorities plans to host conferences and events in various in-person, virtual and hybrid options, the organization announced this week.

Health and safety procedures will be followed at AAPA’s events, which include offering hybrid options for its Spring Conference from March 15-18 in Washington, D.C. and its 110th Annual Convention & Exposition from Sept. 26-29 in Austin.

The organization is also hosting seven meetings and training workshops for the maritime sector next year, including:
  • Communications, Administration and Legal Issues Seminar, held virtually Feb. 24-25
  • Marine Terminal Management Training Seminar, held in person April 19-23 in Miami
  • Commissioners Seminar, held in person May 11-13 in San Diego
  • Cruise Seminar, held virtually from June 21-25
  • Port Security Seminar and Expo, hosted in a hybrid format July 13-15 in New York
  • Facilities Engineering Seminar and Expo, hosted in a hybrid format Nov. 2-4 in Savannah
  • Executive Management Conference, held in person Nov. 15-19 in Phoenix
“For 2021, we look forward to convening our industry again in safe and appropriate settings,” said AAPA Membership and Sponsorship Vice President Meredith Martino. “At the same time, we’ll continue to grow our AAPA Anywhere virtual offerings, including by adding virtual elements to in-person events to offer hybrid experiences, where attendees can choose the participation option that’s right for them. Additionally, should pandemic conditions force us to pivot away from individual in-person events, we have the capability to successfully move from in-person or hybrid events to fully virtual events as needed.”

For more, visit https://www.aapa-ports.org.

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

TRLMI Debuts New App for Mariners

Mariners will have an easier time tracking their sea time and credentials, thanks to a new app launched Monday by San Diego-based Training Resources Limited., Inc.

Available for free and without populated advertising for Android and Apple mobile device users, the new SeaLog™ app offers mariners text or email alerts, news updates on USCG policy changes, and access to certificates and sea time when mariners are out of cell or wifi range.

TRLMI keeps data in secure servers in the U.S. and does not share data with third parties.

The app is also helpful for company training/HR departments in providing status reports about a mariner’s training readiness, eliminating last-minute crew changes due to expiring credentials.

“Our new SeaLog™ app was designed for mariners so they don’t have to worry about when credentials or training certificates are expiring,” said Dave Abrams, CEO of TRLMI. “The app will provide reminders set up by each mariner, and retains copies of every certificate. SeaLogTM also tracks sea time, and allows the mariner to output a spreadsheet file with the information required by the USCG Sea Service form.”

Port of Everett Offers COVID-19 Recovery Help

The Port of Everett is hoping to offer commercial tenants and subtenants a COVID-19 recovery boost with a third round of funding through its Economic Development Grant for Evolution (EDGE) program.

In this round, which would cover qualifying costs between April 1 and Dec. 31 of this year, the program broadened eligibility requirements to be in step with Washington State’s “Safe Start” Phased Reopening Plan. This now includes “any and all reopening phase(s), business-specific guidance and/or public health recommendation(s)/best management practices to resume or reopen,” according to the port.

Port commissioners in June set aside $50,000 toward the program, which provided up to $5,000 in individual grants. So far, five tenants have been awarded a combined $17,420. The rest of the money will be used in the third round. The grants have been used to help businesses comply with COVID-19 requirements.

Applicants must be a commercial tenant or subtenant on port property and have suffered closure or have been forced to modify because of the pandemic and the state’s stay at home and/or reopening phases. Applicants will have until 5 p.m. on Dec. 21 to submit electronically at www.portofeverett.com/EDGE.

Meeting on Port of Long Beach’s Pier B
Set for Dec. 2

The Port of Long Beach will provide a quarterly update on the Pier B On-Dock Rail Support Facility Program at 10 a.m. on Dec. 2 via virtual meeting.

The facility is a major part of the port’s $1 billion rail program, which when finished will allow the port to move more of the cargo to on-dock rail and away from trucks.

The first tracks should be done in 2024, with more tracks coming in 2030, according to the port. The project is expected to be finished in 2031.

Visit www.polb.com/pierb for more. The meeting will be recorded and available for those who could not attend.

LTI, Inc. Nets Fifth SmartWay Award

LTI, Inc. was recently given its fifth SmartWay Excellence Award by the Environmental Protection Agency. The award honors the company and its Milky Way division as “one of North America’s most efficient and lowest emitting tanker fleets,” LTI, Inc. said.

Lynden Transport also netted a SmartWay High Performer Award for efficiently running its flatbed and reefer fleets and is part of the top 20 percent of U.S. carriers for curbing carbon emissions and receiving top marks in fuel efficiency and other performance factors.

“Fewer than 10 percent of all SmartWay carriers operate fleets efficient enough to make the SmartWay High Performer list for carbon emissions,” according to LTI, Inc.

Company president Jason Jansen said LTI, Inc. is extremely proud of this award.

“Each year we strive to seek ongoing improvement in our operations to continue the reduction of our carbon footprint,” he said. “Our success is due to the continued efforts of our entire staff, especially our drivers. Our ability to operate as one of the most efficient carriers in the nation is a true testimony to the quality and dedication of our entire team to drive continuous improvement

‘Tis The Season

By Dave Abrams, Publisher

New Year’s has always been my favorite holiday of the year (followed closely by the 4th of July). It’s a day all about new beginnings. About putting another year behind us and resolving to do new and better things in the year ahead. It’s a day of celebration without any of the gift giving pressures, and a day that is celebrated by the vast majority of the global population.

When that clock strikes midnight around the world on December 31st, I think there is going to be universal agreement that 2021 holds promise of better things to come. I know most of us are ready to put 2020 in the rearview mirror as soon as possible. Not that it’s been all bad – for example, this year brought the opportunity for me to take the helm at PMM and FN online! I’m a glass half full kinda guy, and I am hopeful that some of the lessons we learned this year will make life easier in the future.

But New Year’s does not get the attention it deserves. This time of year, it’s all about Christmas. ‘Tis the season as they say. And everyone in the Maritime Industry are the unsung heroes of Christmas. Yes, Santa may have his elves putting all those toys together, but let’s face it, Santa outgrew that sleigh long ago, and without the ships and ports transporting goods around the globe, Christmas would not be the same. Over 90% of global trade arrives by ship. We’ve been reporting on various ports on the West Coast having record breaking numbers, which would be news in normal times, but during a global pandemic - wow!

So for all of you who are helping to move cargo this time of year, cheers to you! You are Santa’s real helpers, and we know many of you are staying out to sea longer or putting in much longer days at the port to get the job done. Thank you for making it happen.

Wishing you all a very happy & healthy holiday season! Be safe out there.

You can reach Dave Abrams at dave@maritimepublishing.com

Friday, November 27, 2020

Thanksgiving Kindness from CMA CGM,
Port of L.A.

Thanks to the Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Port Police and the CMA CGM Group, area families were able to receive 2,000 turkeys this past weekend and three homeless shelters were given 300 meals on Thanksgiving Day.

Last week, port police and LoVLA members gave out 18-pound frozen turkeys to folks in San Pedro and Wilmington, while LAPD delivered turkeys in South Los Angeles. On Thanksgiving Day, port police delivered 300 meals to Wilmington A Bridge Home, Salvation Army’s Sunrise Shelter in San Pedro and San Pedro A Bridge Home run by Harbor Interfaith.

“Families across the Los Angeles region—including our local Harbor community—have endured many unforeseen challenges in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “We hope these donations made possible by CMA CGM will bring a bit of joy and comfort to our community.”

CMA CGM donated the food as part of a larger effort to feed over 35,000 people during the Thanksgiving holiday in the U.S.

“CMA CGM has a long tradition of giving back to the communities we serve,” said Ed Aldridge, President of CMA CGM America. “There is no doubt that COVID-19 has fundamentally changed how all of us will experience Thanksgiving this year and while it remains an uncertain time, the CMA CGM Group is honored to help Los Angeles families celebrate this important holiday. We are particularly grateful to the Port of Los Angeles and Los Angeles Port Police who are helping make distribution and delivery possible.”

AltaSea at Port of L.A. Celebrates Giving Tuesday

AltaSea at the Port of Los Angeles will present a Dec. 1 webinar on the role that incubators such as AltaSea play on ocean economy and sustainability.

Featured guests include Giving Pledge philanthropist Melanie Lundquist, Los Angeles City Councilmember and President Pro Tempore of the Los Angeles City Council Joe Buscaino.

“Having AltaSea in my district is important not only as an economic driver in our local community, but also the entire Southern California region,” said Buscaino. “California has been the birthplace of innovation from the entertainment industry to Silicon Valley, and I am proud that my council district is the home of ocean innovation and the emerging blue economy.”

AltaSea’s CEO Tim McOsker, Founding Executive Director Jenny Krusoe, and Manager of Advancement Robin Aube will also be featured.

“Having Melanie Lundquist and Councilmember Buscaino on our side is an honor, and their contributions are a huge reason that AltaSea continues to exponentially grow,” said McOsker. “Their generosity helps push AltaSea further into the national spotlight as a leader in the fight for a cleaner ocean and a bluer economy.”

The webinar will take place at 10 a.m. PST on Dec. 1. Space is limited so pre-registration is required. Visit AltaSea-Project-Blue.org/webinars/ to sign up.

Imports Up at NWSA

Imports in October rose 4.7 percent from the same time a year ago at the ports of Seattle and Tacoma, according to new numbers released earlier this month by the Northwest Seaport Alliance.

NWSA is attributing the rise to retailers restocking goods in preparation for the holiday shopping season. The alliance expects shipper demand to stay strong through the end of the year.

Overall, the ports moved 296,892 TEUs last month, a 4.2 percent drop from October 2019.

So far, the NWSA has handled more than 2.7 million TEUs this year, down 15.6 percent compared to 2019. Loaded imports and exports fell 13.2 percent and 14.4 percent, respectively.

The ports recently welcomed Ray-Mont Logistics to Seattle Harbor, where the Montreal freight forwarding and logistics firm is opening its first U.S. transload terminal. The company has expertise in agricultural bulk goods.

NOAA Seeks Members

NOAA is looking for as many as four potential members for its Ocean Exploration Advisory Board. The committee consults the NOAA administrator on ocean exploration-related issues, including strategic planning, exploration priorities and competitive grant programs. Committee members will also be able to weigh in on the development of a national program of ocean exploration.

Applicants should be experts in “scientific research relevant to ocean exploration, including marine archaeology, or ocean-science education and communication,” according to NOAA.

Dec. 9 is the deadline to submit applications to serve a three-year term that is renewable one time. There will be three to four meetings annually, besides subcommittee, task force and working group meetings.

For more, visit https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/11/09/2020-24045/solicitation-of-applications-for-the-ocean-exploration-advisory-board-oeab.

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

USCG Suspends Search for Missing Officer

The search for a Tulalip Tribal Police Department Officer who went missing in the waters near Naval Station Everett on the Snohomish River has been suspended, the U.S. Coast Guard announced Thursday.

“The Coast Guard and our Navy, state, local and Tribal partners saturated the waters of the Snohomish River to locate the missing police officer, but unfortunately we were not able to find him after an extensive search,” said Lt. Zachary Kearney, the Sector Puget Sound command duty officer. “The decision to suspend a search is one of the most difficult decisions the Coast Guard has to make. We search as if one of our own is missing. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of the missing Tulalip Tribal officer.”

The officer was one of two men whose 26-foot work skiff had capsized Tuesday. The crew were encountering rough seas and were taking water over the bow, the agency said.

Navy Whidbey Island Search and Rescue found the vessel submerged about 2 feet below the water line, the USCG said. The survivor, who was found near Hat Island and sent for medical care, said he last saw his partner a half hour before being recovered.

If anyone has information about the missing officer, contact Sector Puget Sound at 206-217-6001.

Cargo Volumes Up at Port of Los Angeles

The Port of Los Angeles saw its busiest month in history last month, when the nation’s busiest seaport handled 980,729 TEUs, according to the latest numbers released last week.

That’s 27.3 percent more than October 2019, an increase port officials are attributing to retailers stocking up for the holiday shopping season. The previous record took place in August with 961,833 TEUs.

Los Angeles moved 506,613 TEUs in loaded imports and 143,936 TEUs of loaded exports last month.

“Overall volume has been strong yet the trade imbalance remains a concern,” said Port Executive Director Gene Seroka. “For every three and a half containers that are imported into Los Angeles from abroad, only one container leaves filled with U.S. exports. One-way trade will not put Americans back to work and it adds logistical challenges to the supply chain.”

But with COVID-19 cases trending upward, significant swings in the supply chain are likely to continue, Seroka said. “With COVID-19 cases on the rise nationwide, the U.S. economic outlook remains uncertain,” Seroka said. “Volume swings like the one we are seeing are an outgrowth of this uncertainty. We are using Port Optimizer™ data and the expertise of our supply chain partners to prepare for a range of scenarios to respond to market demands in the months ahead.”

Port of Seattle Passes 2021 Budget

The Port of Seattle Commission recently passed its 2021 budget and a five-year, $3.7 billion capital improvement plan focused on economic recovery and investment in the face of COVID-19 and the uncertainty it brings.

“Sticking to our core mission is the best way the Port can respond to the COVID-19 crisis and build an equitable recovery,” said Port of Seattle Commission President Peter Steinbrueck. “This budget invests in the most fundamental lines of business at the Port, work that no other government in the region is set up to do, to help our community survive this crisis and thrive in the coming recovery.”

About 35 percent of the port’s funding is dedicated to capital projects. The five-year plan includes installing COVID-19 safety measures for cruise terminals, bringing shore power to the Pier 66 cruise terminal, enhancing commercial fishing berths 6 & 8 at Terminal 91, developing a new Maritime Innovation Center at Fishermen’s Terminal and designing the upland maritime industrial development at Terminal 91, according to the port.

In 2021, the Northwest Seaport Alliance will start the first phase of efforts to prepare Terminal 5 in West Seattle for the arrival of bigger ships.

“Even as we manage the uncertainty of COVID, we are steering our way towards a positive and transformative year,” said Executive Director Steve Metruck. “Tough economic times forced us to focus our investments to deliver the greatest impact. We will come out of this pandemic stronger, more resilient, and more aware of how we can address inequity in our region.”

Monday, November 23, 2020

Port of Camas-Washougal Nets Grant

The Port of Camas-Washougal recently garnered a $3 million Economic Development Administration grant, which will allow the port to build a new 50,000-square foot industrial building for area manufacturing companies that will be divided into 15 separate 3,300-square-foot bays.

The port was able to obtain this funding with the help of Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler, Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell.

The project is expected to generate 130 jobs and $10.6 million in private investment. It will also help bolster economic activity in the area and draw more business to the port’s industrial park in Washougal.

There’s been a demand for more industrial space in recent years, prompting the port to double its industrial space to over 340,000 square feet. This translated into the construction of four industrial buildings totaling 145,000 square feet and the acquisition of two industrial buildings totaling 41,344 square feet. Visit https://portcw.com/available-real-estate/ for more.

Friday, November 20, 2020

Port of Olympia Makes Operational Changes

As COVID-19 cases rise, the Port of Olympia is quickly making some operational changes in alignment with Washington Governor Jay Inslee’s coronavirus restrictions.

The port’s administrative office will stay closed to the public and commission meetings will continue to happen remotely. Meeting information can be found at http://portolympia.com/89/Commission.

While Swantown Marina is operational, its offices will be closed and services will be contactless (phone/email/website). Onsite Maintenance and Harbor Operations workers will be social distancing. The marine fueling station will continue operating, while Harbor Patrol operations have been halted until further notice. For more, call 360-528-8049.

Swantown Boatworks office and work yard is open with onsite workers who will be social distancing. Services can be conducted through office service window, telephone, email, or website. For more, call 360-528-8059.

The Marine Terminal will stay open but terminal access is limited. Ship visits and public tours have been canceled, the port said.

Port of Hueneme to Begin One-Year Pilot

The Port of Hueneme has started a one-year pilot program to demonstrate the ability to complete the cold-treatment process of blueberries, the port announced earlier this month.

The Southern California port is known for receiving refrigerated produce but by handling the cold-treatment process on-port, the service lowers the cost of moving the blueberries, curbs a significant amount of greenhouse gases and 2.2 million vehicle miles traveled cross-country and helps California and Peruvian farmers, the port said.

“This new opportunity is not only a game changer for our blueberry partners, but also will help reduce air emissions across the U.S. and spur local job creation, a win-win-win,” said Oxnard Harbor District Board President Jess J. Ramirez. The blueberries will come from Peru’s Callao and Paita Ports through the port for West Coast consumers. “I would like to thank our partners at USDA, CDFA, and Ventura County Agricultural Commissioner Ed Williams for their collaboration and faith in our Port to bring this program to fruition,” said Kristin Decas, CEO & Port Director. “This new pilot program will enable blueberries to come directly to the West Coast from Peru during the growing off-season in the United States, benefiting consumers and local blueberry companies alike.”

USS Wayne E. Meyer was Successfully Undocked

Earlier this month, Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Wayne E. Meyer was successfully undocked by Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility, thanks to the shipyard and ship crew members, it was announced.

Wayne E. Meyer, which is home-ported in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, will finish the final stages of its DSRA pier-side, according to the Navy.

“I could not be more proud of the fantastic teamwork executed by the shipyard, the crew and our partners at Vigor Marine,” said Capt. Greg Burton, PHNSY & IMF Commanding Officer. “I’m looking forward to seeing the team finish the availability strong and get Wayne E. Meyer back to the fleet ready for tasking.”

This is the first time PHNSY & IMF has partnered with West Coast-based Vigor Marine as the prime contractor.

“Vigor has been able to successfully execute Wayne E. Meyer’s availability through early planning, constant communication, and teamwork, partnering with our government project management team as well as successful management of the same subcontractors who've worked at PHNSY & IMF for many years," said Tom Freeman, deputy project manager for Vigor.

October Imports Were Up at Port of Oakland

Cargo volumes at the Port of Oakland were up 5.8 percent last month, the port announced Wednesday.

The Northern California seaport handled 216,686 TEUs last month, a 5.8 percent increase from October 2019’s 204,880 TEUs. Imports for October rose 10.4 percent while exports dipped 0.5 percent year over year.

Port officials are attributing its growing import numbers to changing consumer spending habits driven by the pandemic, with much of those imports coming from Asia. Retailers are bracing for another wave of potential factory closures and are stocking up goods.

“We’re cautiously optimistic because our industry partners are pointing to continued strong import demand heading into 2021,” said Port of Oakland Maritime Director Bryan Brandes. “Peak season is here, and we’re seeing retailers stocking up on as much product as possible.”

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Port of Everett Commission Passes 2021 Fiscal Plan

The Port of Everett Commission recently passed a $61 million budget for 2021 that accounts for the pandemic and focuses on a series of projects that enhances the waterfront.

The port expects a reduction of revenue due to economic impacts stemming from COVID-19, including the slowing of cargo movement and aerospace production. Despite the setback, the port will remain bullish in its capital improvement projects, including 74 projects that push the port’s Strategic Initiatives. They include ongoing plans to modernize the seaport, bringing jobs back to the former Kimberly-Clark mill site and developing a new mixed-use waterfront community at Waterfront Place.

The plan calls for $93.6 million in investment through 2025.

Port of Portland Working to Bring Jobs to Gresham

The Port of Portland Commission recently agreed to engage with Specht Development Inc. and Colas Development Group on a Master Development Agreement that would market, develop and attract businesses and more jobs to Gresham, with an eye toward diversity.

“We want this development project to not just bring more quality jobs to East Multnomah County, but to attract businesses that provide stability and career growth so people in the region can support themselves and their families,” said Keith Leavitt, chief commercial officer at the port. “We are grateful we found committed partners who have the background and expertise to help us accomplish this.”

The agreement focuses on marketing and developing the 48 acre-Gresham Vista Lot 5, one of the remaining large lots undeveloped among the port’s properties, as a manufacturing-focused business park.

“We are pleased and excited to partner with Colas, the Port of Portland, the City of Gresham, and our extended project team, to pursue development projects on the 48-acre Lot 5 site in the Gresham Vista Business Park,” said Gregory Specht, president and founder of Specht Development. “This unique partnership allows Colas the opportunity to pursue larger-scale industrial real estate developments and another opportunity for Specht to create a significant number of Quality Jobs while also meeting much needed DEI goals.”

AAPA Recognizes Apprenticeships
in Maritime Industry

In honor of National Apprenticeship Week, the American Association of Port Authorities wanted to spotlight the significance of apprentices in the maritime industry and urged stakeholders to expand apprenticeship training.

“Seaport industry employers and their maritime and supply chain industry partners are facing the converging forces of an aging workforce, rapid technology advances, acceleration of rapid ‘on-demand’ distribution of goods, and a decades-long lack of students entering the industry,” said Mary Beth Long, AAPA's marketing and workforce development vice president. “AAPA strongly supports apprenticeships and related training programs. We’re working with ports and multimodal transportation, distribution and logistics employers nationwide to create apprenticeship-based career pathways that meet employers’ critical workforce needs and pay workers a family-supporting wage."

The U.S. Department of Labor recently awarded AAPA a “Closing the Skills Gap” grant of almost $6 million to coordinate apprenticeships throughout the maritime sector.

“This country currently faces a skills gap and overall talent shortage in the number of qualified workers to meet the workforce demand across America’s critical seaport industry,” said Long. “AAPA strongly encourages its members and industry partners to join us in supporting apprenticeship training programs through adoption of, and direct investment and enrollment of their personnel in, workforce and professional development training.”

Port of Long Beach Achieves Single-Month Record

For the first time in its history, the Port of Long Beach handled over 800,000 cargo containers in a single month last month, according to new numbers released by the port.

The 806,603 TEUs processed by the port was 17.2 percent more than October 2019.

From that overall number, 402,408 TEUs were imported last month, a 19.4 percent increase from the same time last year, while 114,679 TEUs were exported, a 12.9 percent decrease.

Meanwhile, empty containers were up 31.8 percent to 289,517 TEUs.

The port is attributing the rise in cargo to retailers getting ready from the holiday season, an increase in e-commerce and higher demand for gardening and pet equipment, as well as musical instruments.

“The peak holiday shipping season is supporting our ongoing recovery and record highs, but we are now facing a new wave of COVID-19 cases spreading across the country and remain locked in a trade dispute with China,” said Port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “We are optimistic about the gradual economic recovery while bracing for any shocks still to come.”

Friday, November 13, 2020

Watch Out for Frost Buildup on Moored Ships

U.S. Coast Guard officials in Alaska are asking mariners to remember to clean off buildup of snow and ice from moored vessels, which could cause stability risk and potential sinking, damage and pollution if left unattended.

While out on the water in the winter, mariners should wear proper personal protective equipment such as a life jacket. Mariners should also conduct regular vessel cheks and update owner information with the harbor or marina.

“Ice and snow can clog cockpit drains causing additional weight loads that can push the waterline over scuppers and through hulls,” said Michael Folkerts, boating safety specialist for the 17th Coast Guard District. “A common cause of harbor sinkings are frozen and subsequently cracked through hulls and failed fittings. Winter conditions can be rough on boats, and boaters need to take extra precautions.”

Dredging is Underway at Charleston
Marina Complex

With the Oregon International Port of Coos Bay launching its dredging work at the Charleston Marina Complex near the Point Adams Facility and the Russell Marine fuel dock, mariners should tread carefully as they move in the inner basin and near the outflow pipe in the Marina Complex and within the Coos Bay Harbor.

Dredging, which is expected to take place through the rest of the year, is being done to improve navigability and accessibility within the area. Within the inner basin, orange pencil buoys mark the outflow pipe, which expands into the bay from the marina, and is marked with four large, white floats, the port said.

Mariners should move carefully near the dredge pipe area and should reach out to port dredging crews for more instruction and help in navigation at 541-294-1555 or 541-294-3234.

Port of Everett Welcomes Return
of Pulp Cargo Business

The Port of Everett Seaport recently saw the return of pulp cargo for the first time in 15 years with Westwood Shipping Lines vessels exporting the product through the deep-water port.

The regular pulp export shipments stems from an agreement to move 8,000 tons of the product monthly through 2021, the port said.

The port credits its recent investments in on-dock rail and cargo handling equipment and its long-term partnerships with Westwood Shipping Lines, Jones Stevedoring, BNSF railroad and an ILWU workforce who conducted test shipments for securing the new business.

The port now receives pulp bales on a weekly basis as it travels by rail from BC, Canada and later loaded onto a vessel headed to China.

Matson Posts Latest Numbers

Honolulu-based Matson Inc. posted a net income of $107.5 million for the nine months ending Sept. 30, and consolidated revenue of more than $1.6 billion.

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Matt Cox said Matson's businesses continued to perform well in the third quarter despite ongoing challenges stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic effects.

“Our China service, consisting of the CLX and CLX+ services, was the primary driver of the increase in consolidated operating income year-over-year as a result of strong demand for our expedited ocean services and ongoing challenges in the transpacific air freight markets,” Cox said. “I am confident that we can make the CLX+ a permanent service because of Matson's 15-year track record of operating our industry leading expedited CLX service in the transpacific trade lane, the introduction of our new Alaska-to-Asia Express (AAX) service for Alaska seafood exports to Asia as part of the CLX+ westbound return trip to China, and the likelihood of continued favorable transpacific trade lane supply and demand dynamics going forward."

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

NOAA to Seek Input on AOAs Near SoCal,
Gulf of Mexico

NOAA is asking the public to weigh in on the creation of Aquaculture Opportunity Areas in federal waters near Southern California and the Gulf of Mexico, as well as suggestions for future AOA sites.

The public will have until Dec. 22 to submit comments.

This announcement comes after the May release of an Executive Order on Promoting American Seafood Competitiveness and Economic Growth. NOAA Fisheries Assistant Administrator Chris Oliver last month said that growing the nation’s aquaculture industry is critical to expanding and stabilizing the sustainable seafood supply during uncertain environmental and economic times. It provides quality jobs, economic opportunities and a boost in seasonal tourism and commercial fishing.

For more, visit https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/aquaculture-opportunity-areas.

For questions about the RFI, reach out to Diane Windham, Aquaculture Coordinator, California NOAA Fisheries West Coast Region at diane.windham@noaa.gov.

USCG Cutter Alert Completes Patrol

The 210-foot medium-endurance cutter, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Alert, recently returned to Astoria, Oregon, from a 60-day living marine resources patrol that stretched from Humboldt County to the Southern Maritime Border with Mexico.

The crew members, who were there to support the Coast Guard’s Ocean Steward and Ocean Guardian strategic guidance, boarded 38 vessels and reported compliance that resulted in 47 violations. Cutter Alert found 30 safety violations and canceled three commercial fishing vessels that were deemed unsafe. The crew also issued 17 living marine resources violations.

“I’m extremely proud of the Alert crew for their dedication and devotion to duty during our living marine resources patrol off the coast of California,” said Cmdr. Tyson Scofield, the Alert’s commanding officer. “The fishing industry is a vital component of the West Coast economy, and the Coast Guard is ready to keep the industry safe and sustainable. Alert’s first District 11 Living Marine Resources patrol in several years was a resounding success, paving the way for future major cutter operations in the region.”

Area Groups Net Port of Los Angeles Grants

Four organizations were recently awarded grants totaling $209,169 from the Port of Los Angeles’ Harbor Community Benefit Foundation grants program, which funds programs serving Wilmington and San Pedro communities.

“The grants awarded this year are going to an impressive group of organizations with a strong commitment to making an immediate and real impact on the health and sustainability of our port communities,” said Harbor Commission President Jaime Lee. “We look forward to seeing the results of these programs in the months ahead.” Grants include $75,000 to Los Angeles Walks for the Safe Streets Community Promotora Education Program, which seeks to improve air quality and make neighborhoods safer for walkers and those who don’t use vehicles.

They also include $34,169 to Wilmington Community Clinic’s asthma program, $60,000 to South Bay Center for Counseling to turn a vacant lot to an urban community greenspace and $40,000 to Sharefest Community Development, Inc., according to the port.

Port of Everett to Relocate Cranes

Later this month, the Port of Everett plans to move a pair of 100-foot gauge cargo cranes from the upland yard storage to its new home at the newly upgraded South Terminal Wharf.

Crane relocation is expected to happen between Nov. 18 and Nov. 25.

The two 214-foot-tall electric cranes - which the port purchased from Everport Terminal for $1 each and spent about nearly $6 million to transport - were in upland storage to undergo system upgrades before the move to the wharf.

After they are relocated, workers will install the cranes, as well as conduct electrical work and operational testing so the equipment will be ready for service. The cranes should be operational at the terminal by the end of the year, the port said.

“These cranes are a game changer for the Port and our region,” port Chief Operating Officer Carl Wollebek, told PMM back in May. “Putting them into use at our upgraded terminal keeps us nimble and competitive as the industry continues to send larger ships and heavier cargo to our docks.”

Friday, November 6, 2020

Auction of Former Evergreen State Ferry
Set for Nov. 17

The M/V Dream, also known as the former 310-foot Evergreen State ferry, will be auctioned to the highest bidder on Nov. 17.

The U.S. Marshal arrested the vessel Sept. 15 at the behest of the Port of Olympia because of almost $67,000 in unpaid dockage and fees.

The decommissioned ferry came to the port in April 2018. The port, which had not received payment from the owner since January, placed a lien against the vessel ferry. In June, the port tried to work with the owner who was seeking potential buyers, but the owner came up short.

The port had the vessel arrested. Marine Lender Services LLC is the substitute custodian.

Bidding will begin at $50,000. Cash will not be accepted. Payment must be made by certified check to U.S. Marshals Service by 4 p.m. on the sale day.

Those attending the auction must wear masks and practice social distancing. The vessel will be auctioned “as is where is.” Marine Lenders Services, LLC can arrange live previews for potential buyers on Nov. 9-10 at the Port of Olympia by calling 206-284-9930 and buck@marinelendersservices.com. The buyer needs to move the vessel within 48 hours of purchase or up to two weeks of temporary moorage for qualified buyers.

For more, visit http://www.portolympia.com/487/Vessel-Auction---November-17-2020.

CMTS to Host Webinar, Publish Catalogs on Handling COVID-19 in Maritime Industry

The Committee on Marine Transportation System will host a webinar on COVID-19 Testing Strategies for U.S. Merchant Mariners from 2 to 3:30 p.m. EST on Nov. 18. The remote event will feature speakers such as Maritime Administration Administrator RADM Mark Buzby and Marine Transportation Systems Director Mike Emerson, as well as Samantha Case, an epidemiologist from the CDC/NIOSH Center for Maritime Safety and Health Studies, and Dr. Kara Tardivel, a medical officer for the CDC/Maritime Unit, Division of Global Migration and Quarantine.

The webinar will touch on various topics, such as background data on the pandemic, types of COVID-19 testing for US Merchant Mariners and how reliable and available the testing is and CDC recommendations for US Merchant Mariners.

To check out the webinar, go to https://usdot.webex.com/join/nuns.jain or call 404-443-2170; with Access Code:60061206. Make sure to log in 30 minutes before the webinar starts to download any plug-ins and ensure Webex compatibility.

The webinar comes at the heels of three reference catalogs published in late October by the CMTS to help U.S. merchant mariners and the Marine Transportation System. They include "Catalog of COVID-19 Federal Guidance and References for the U.S. Maritime Industry," "Catalog of COVID-19 Best Management Practices for the U.S. Maritime Industry," and "Catalog of Mental Health Resources for U.S. Merchant Mariners and Critical Workforce in the Marine Transportation System."

Email C19WG@cmts.gov to provide feedback on the catalogs. Visit https://www.cmts.gov/topics/working_group for more on the webinar and catalogs.

Los Angeles Seeking Clean Tech Proposals for Port

To advance efforts to make trucks serving the San Pedro Bay seaport complex a zero-emissions fleet by 2035, Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti is putting out a new Request for Information seeking proposals to expand clean technology at the Port of Los Angeles. “We can only turn the tide on the climate crisis if we work across every sector to reduce dangerous emissions, protect vulnerable neighborhoods from the perils of pollution, and rev up our investments in clean energy,” said Garcetti. “Our RFI sends a strong signal: Los Angeles is a laboratory for new technology, a pioneering destination for sustainability, and a place where we deploy the power of innovation to strengthen lives, secure livelihoods, preserve public health, and lead a just transition toward a greener economy and a more equitable future.”

This effort is driven by the Clean Air Action Plan, a landmark blueprint to aggressively clean up the air pollution generated by port operations and developing clean technology for the trucks that move cargo in and out of the nation’s busiest seaport complex is a major part of those efforts.

Currently, the port is engaged in 16 different zero-emission demonstration projects designed to bring feasible technology to the marketplace, said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka.

”Conversion of the Port drayage fleet to zero-emission technology involves tremendous financial investment and will take the collaboration and commitment of many stakeholders - both public and private - to create a viable market for zero-emissions drayage technology,” he said. “This RFI is designed to recruit the best ideas available to help us serve as a catalyst and make a meaningful impact on climate change."

Applicants have until 4 p.m. on Jan. 7 to submit responses to Tricia Carey at tcarey@portla.org For more, visit https://kentico.portoflosangeles.org/getmedia/9e977a0c-74e1-4afa-b99f-38da05d32955/20201030-POLA-CTP-RFI-(final)

REC Juneau Relocated

Mariners taking their tests in Alaska should be mindful of the Regional Exam Center Juneau’s new location. The center, which is offering limited testing services, has moved from the Mendenhall Mall to the Hurff A. Saunders Federal Building at 709 W. 9th Street, Suite 322, Juneau, AK 99801.

The center’s other contact information stays the same, whether mariners call 907-463-2458, fax at 907-463-2482 or email recjun@uscg.mil. Mariners who want to set up an examination time at REC Juneau should send an email request to recjun@uscg.mil.

For more on REC and Monitoring Unit location, visit the REC page of the National Maritime Center (NMC) website.

The Customer Service Center is open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST. Contact 1-888-IASKNMC (427-5662) or IASKNMC@uscg.mil for more.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Hope is Not a Strategy

By Dave Abrams, Publisher

You all have probably heard that classic interview question, “If you were an animal, what kind of animal would you be?” I’d like to modify that slightly to “If you were a ship, what kind of ship would you be?” According to my wife, I’m a supertanker. And no, it’s not because I’ve packed on a few extra pounds this year. It’s because nothing seems to push me off course. A supertanker is an incredible machine – super calm on top, doesn’t put out a big wake, but the energy to keep it going is incredible. It takes a pretty big sea to get a super tanker rocking around. A big ship like that doesn’t change course easily, and once it is moving in a certain direction, it takes a lot to stop it. Yep, that’s me. OK, so what’s the point?

There are a lot of issues I guess we are supposed to worry about these days. Election results, COVID 19, the economy, climate change, regional conflicts, polar ice caps melting, etc etc. Seems like a never ending string of bad news. (Of course, good news doesn’t sell newspapers!) However, none of that stuff really occupies much of my time. Why you ask? Am I some sort of insensitive, apathetic fool? I don’t think so. I just choose to focus on the things I can control, and not worry about the things I can’t. It’s pretty much that simple. Yes, I am going to do my part to be a good citizen. I vote and I reach out to my elected officials to voice my opinion. But I am not going to let the negative things around me dominate the little amount of extra brain time I have left at the end of every day.

On the flip side of that coin, hope is a great thing. I love sunsets – my daily reminder that tomorrow is another day, and I get a “do over” on all the things I failed to accomplish today. That hope of tomorrow keeps me going. But one of my maxims in life is “Hope is not a strategy.” I can’t simply hope that COVID goes away next year, or that somehow Congress figures out how to actually work together. I can only plan for what I know and can control and try to mitigate the risks that I can’t control. It’s true in business and it’s true in life. November kicks off my annual ritual of budgeting and planning for next year. Many of you are probably doing the same thing. The crystal ball is especially cloudy this time around, so my decisions are based on the data I have available, mixed in with a little bit of “gut feel” and a touch of both hope and skepticism. Shake well and see what comes out! The point is, we can’t wait for things to improve around us, we have to take action to deal with the present and plan for the future based on what we know and believe right now.

I do see a lot of things to be hopeful for. I’ve talked before about my faith in human ingenuity to deal with whatever problems we encounter. I think most people are good people, and at the end of the day I think people agree on more things about life than they disagree on. The media folks certainly don’t portray that message, but it’s certainly true in my own experiences in talking with folks from all walks of life in the maritime world. So I believe we’re going to be OK. For now, my orders are “steady as she goes, and keep your eyes on the horizon.”

Be safe out there.

You can reach Dave Abrams at dave@maritimepublishing.com

L.A. Officials Break Ground on Waterfront Project

Harbor, civic and community officials on Thursday celebrated the launch of the long-awaited Wilmington Waterfront Promenade project.

The $70.8 million project will include making Water Street parallel to the current railroad tracks and other infrastructure upgrades such as new utilities, paving, lighting and landscaping, as well as a promenade, public pier and dock, and playground, according to the port.

“Providing more direct public access to Wilmington’s historic waterfront has been a long-time vision for the Port of Los Angeles, but also for me personally,” said Los Angeles Harbor Commissioner Lucia Moreno-Linares. “As a Wilmington resident for more than 50 years, I am grateful to all who have played a role in keeping this project moving forward.”

The project, set for completion in 2023, also includes a new community park near Banning’s Landing Community Center, seating for visitors, bike racks and drinking fountains.

“We have worked diligently over the years to create more open spaces and recreational areas for the residents of Wilmington,” said 15th District Los Angeles City Councilman Buscaino. “It is most important that we are constantly creating buffers between the Wilmington community and heavy industry. This project will deliver a new waterfront that will be a game changer for Wilmington and the L.A. Waterfront.”

USCG Cutter Polar Star to Head to the Arctic

This winter, the crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star will travel to the Arctic to enforce the nation’s maritime governance and security in the area.

“The Arctic is no longer an emerging frontier, but is instead a region of growing national importance,” said Vice Adm. Linda Fagan, commander of U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Area. “The Coast Guard is committed to protecting U.S. sovereignty and working with our partners to uphold a safe, secure, and rules-based Arctic.”

The Polar Star usually heads to Antarctica to aid Operation Deep Freeze, an annual mission to replenish U.S. Antarctic stations and help the National Science Foundation.

This year, resupplying McMurdo Station was postponed because of COVID-19 safety. (A delivery of limited supplies will be sent by aircraft.)

The Coast Guard hopes to resume this operation next year.

Kiewit Infrastructure West Chosen for Hawaii Terminal Project

Kiewit Infrastructure West has been selected to work on the Kapalama Container Terminal Phase 2 project set to begin this spring, the Hawaii Department of Transportation has announced.

The $350 million work will include waterside construction at Piers 40-43 in Honolulu Harbor, which will “add 18.5 acres of fast-land, including 1,860 linear feet of new berthing space for two container ships to dock simultaneously and up to six gantry cranes,” as well as dredging and broadening the basin between Piers 40 and 41, according to the agency. This allows for barge berthing space along Pier 41.

“The Kapalama Container Terminal project is especially exciting because it will add much needed docking and cargo space that will increase efficiency for harbor users, help reduce traffic around Honolulu Harbor, and address sea-level concerns for the facility,” said Jade Butay, director of the Hawaii Department of Transportation. “The Kapalama Container Terminal improvements is a project we can all be proud of.”

The project is expected to be done in late 2023.

“This project is proceeding at a critical time when our state needs it most as we continue fighting COVID-19 and its impacts,” said Gov. David Ige. “The work will be performed by local talent and infuse hundreds of millions of dollars into the local economy, in addition to improving our harbor system that will benefit the state for decades to come.”

Go to http://www.kctinfo.com/ for more.

NOAA, Google Agree to Team on AI Exploration

NOAA’s Satellite and Information Service has inked a three-year contract with Google to team up on pilot projects that will look into how Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning could deepen NOAA’s satellite and environmental data uses, including weather forecasting and climate research.

“Strengthening NOAA’s data processing through the use of big data, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and other advanced analytical approaches is critical for maintaining and enhancing the performance of our systems in support of public safety and the economy,” said acting NOAA administrator Neil Jacobs. “I am excited to utilize new authorities granted to NOAA to pursue cutting-edge technologies that will enhance our mission and better protect lives and property.”

NOAA and Google will start with small-scale systems before pursuing full-scale models that could be used throughout the organization. NOAA employees will also have hands-on AI training opportunities.

"By bringing together NOAA and Google’s expertise and talent, we can both resource and jointly explore AI/ML methods to achieve a more effective use of satellite and other environmental data,” said Mike Daniels, vice president of Global Public Sector, Google Cloud. “Our goal is to increase scientific impact and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of environmental and satellite data by leveraging Google Cloud’s infrastructure and AI/ML know-how. All this will help improve weather forecasting, research and unlock innovation.”

Friday, October 30, 2020

Port of Los Angeles Unveils New Online
Permitting Portal

The Port of Los Angeles wants to make its permitting process easier with a new online portal, permits.portoflosangeles.org.

Last year, the port started developing a way to handle permits online. The new portal is in line with Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Aug. 7 Executive Directive for Contactless Government asking all city departments to offer their services digitally.

The port as the Los Angeles Harbor Department oversees the Harbor District for the city and state under the State Tidelands Trust. The public needs permission from the port for various activities, including “leasing, construction, repairs, demolition, environmental testing, operating Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) and hosting events on port property,” according to the port.

Email to developmentpermits@portla.org for more.

USCG Seeks Input on Waterway Closure

U.S. Coast Guard officials are considering a contractor’s request to block a waterway for two weeks to allow them to demolish the old West Sammamish River Bridge at Sammamish River at Mile 0.5 near Kenmore, Washington, the USCG said Wednesday.

The contractor wants to block navigation to the waterway from midnight on Jan. 18, 2021, to 11:59 p.m. on Jan. 31, 2021.

Mariners will need to stay at least 100 yards away from the area while demolition takes place to ensure safety. Maritime first responders will be able to pass as long as they give at least 30 minutes of advance notice, though if contractors are in the middle of a lift operation maritime responders won’t be able to pass until the lift operation is complete.

Mariners have until Nov. 27 to weigh in on the request. Email D13-SMB-D13-BRIDGES@uscg.mil to submit input.

NWSA Moved 308,682 TEUs in September

The Northwest Seaport Alliance - the partnership between the ports of Seattle and Tacoma - handled 308,682 TEUs last month, according to new numbers released Oct. 20.

While the ports handled 11.1 percent fewer shipments overall from the same time a year ago (347,278 TEUs in September 2019), the September numbers represent the ports’ best month of the year. Previous months in 2020 don’t surpass 300,000 TEUs, according to the statistics.

And despite imports falling 6.8 percent year over year, the ports saw their biggest monthly volumes for loaded imports since September 2019 with retailers replenishing goods in preparation for the holiday shopping season, according to NWSA.

Like other ports, the NWSA has experienced the economic effects of the pandemic, with 59 canceled sailing this year.

So far, the gateway has moved more than 2.4 million TEUs in overall volumes for 2020, a decrease of about 16.8 percent from the same time period in 2019.

USCG, State Team to Remove Sunken Vessel
in Hawaii

The U.S. Coast Guard, the State of Hawaii and a vessel owner have been working together to remove a recreational vessel that sank Saturday night in Hawaii Kai.

Sector Honolulu watch standers were alerted about the sunken vessel, which was leaking fuel into the canal. An absorbent boom was used by Hawaii Kai Marina Patrol to stop the fuel spill from spreading.

“The Coast Guard is committed to ocean safety and preservation,” said Chief Warrant Officer Russell Strathern, from Coast Guard Sector Honolulu. “Mitigating the pollution threat and assessing impact is our priority and we are working closely with the state and responsible party throughout the process.”

The vessel owner’s insurance company also responded to the incident, working to curb the environmental impact and prepare the vessel for salvage Tuesday, the agency said.

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

NOAA, Alaskan Council Partner
on PORTS System

NOAA and the Prince William Sound Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council have teamed up to develop the third new Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System, or PORTS system, in an effort to boost maritime safety and efficiency off Valdez, Alaska, NOAA announced earlier this month.

The Valdez PORTS, which marks the 36th system in the national network, will encompass a current NOAA National Water Level Observation Network (NWLON) station at Valdez and a pair of new council run-and-maintained meteorological-ocean buoys that size up “tidal currents, wind, air temperature, water temperature and barometric pressure,” according to the agency. One buoy is at the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company’s Valdez Marine Terminal off Jackson Point. The second buoy is close to the Valdez Duck Flats.

“This new system, and the others like them around the country, reduce ship accidents by more than 50 percent, increase the size of ships that can get in and out of seaports, and reduce traffic delays,” said Steven Thur, acting deputy director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service. “They also provide real-time, resilience-ready data as coastal conditions rapidly change, potentially threatening our coastal communities.”

The Port of Valdez anticipates a rise in commercial ship traffic and passenger cruise ships are in the next five to 10 years, according to NOAA.

“While the council’s sole purpose for installing these buoys is to promote the environmentally safe operation of the Valdez Marine Terminal and associated tankers, we believe the integration of this metocean data into NOAA’s PORTS will benefit and improve safety for a variety of other maritime users,” said Donna Schantz, executive director for the council. “This is another excellent example of how collaborative science can have wide-ranging impacts for the betterment of all.”

USCG Helps Alaskan Fishing Vessel in Distress

U.S. Coast Guard crew members aided a disabled fishing vessel, the 55-foot Elise Marie, taking on water about six miles south of Icy Bay, Alaska, the agency said Wednesday.

A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew sent over a dewatering pump to the vessel to help control the flooding before Coast Guard Cutter John McCormick crew members towed the vessel to Yakutat.

"This successful case highlighted the importance of mariner preparedness," said Lt. Joseph Sullivan-Springhetti, commanding officer of the Coast Guard Cutter John McCormick. "The master has good communication equipment and survival gear onboard, which allowed us to find them quickly, tow them safely, and with confidence.We were also really fortunate to have the support of the Yakutat Police Department, who met us late in the evening and helped bring the vessel in to the pier safely."

Port of Long Beach Posted Busiest Month Ever

Cargo volumes at the Port of Long Beach were up 12.5 percent last month with 795,580 TEUs, marking the port’s busiest month in history, according to new statistics released by the port Oct. 21.

The port also moved 14.3 percent more imports with 405,618 TEUs and 8.7 percent fewer exports with 112,556 TEUs last month when compared to the same time last year. The port also handled 277,406 TEUs last month, 21.2 percent more than September 2019. Long Beach surpassed its previously best record, which took place in July with 753,081 TEUs.

The port is attributing the numbers to rising demand for office equipment and home-improvement goods during the pandemic. The port also saw 92 cargo vessels call at the port last month. Nineteen of them were unscheduled calls, making up for the canceled sailings that happened earlier in the year because of COVID-19.

“Large retail stores are reopening, merchants are stocking up for the winter holidays and the increased use of e-commerce appears to be an enduring trend picked up by consumers during the recent stay-at-home orders,” said Port Executive Director Mario Cordero. “Still, we must move ahead with caution during the remaining months of 2020 because the national economy continues to be heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

West Coast Port Projects Net Federal Grants

West Coast ports were among the more than a dozen agencies receiving over $220 million in port-related improvement grants from the Maritime Administration’s (MARAD) Port Infrastructure Development Program, the U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao announced Oct. 15.

The federal grants will improve America’s ports with nearly half the projects in Opportunity Zones, which were created to revitalize economically distressed communities, according to Chao.

Grant will fund:
  • The Bellingham Shipping Terminal Rehabilitation Project, which received more than $6.8 million toward building a bigger heavy load area and taking away rock outcrops in front of Berth 1.
  • The final phase of the Terminal 5 Uplands Modernization and Rehabilitation Project in Seattle, which netted more than $10.6 million toward surfacing, paving, and reinforcement of a terminal-wide stormwater treatment system and other work.
  • Coos Bay Rail Line Phase II Tie and Surfacing Program in Oregon, which received over $9.8 million.
  • The Marine Terminal Freight Dock & Corridor Improvements in Seward, Alaska, which garnered over $19.7 million toward extending the dock by about 375 feet, allowing for more freight cargo and curbing conflicts between freight and cruise movements onshore and in the harbor.
  • The SR 47-Vincent Thomas Bridge & Harbor Boulevard-Front Street Interchange Improvement Project in Los Angeles, which received $9.88 million.
“Support for this federal grant came from all levels of government,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “We are grateful to the U.S. Department of Transportation, including its Maritime Administration, the members of Congress who represent the Port, and state and local leaders for recognizing the urgent need to modernize this critical junction of the National Highway Freight Network.”

Friday, October 23, 2020

USCG Tells Divers, Mariners to Stay Safe During Spiny Lobster Season

Following two diving-related deaths and a rise in diving activity, the U.S. Coast Guard is asking divers and mariners in the greater Los Angeles area to be safe during California spiny lobster season.

“The importance of boating and diving safety cannot be overstated,” said Cmdr. Johna Rossetti from Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach. “Remember to be safe in anything you do. Taking precautions can increase the chance of helping or finding a diver in the event Coast Guard assistance is needed.”

Divers should never dive alone, be medically assessed before diving, make a diving plan, provide a float plan to a person on land in case divers don’t return on schedule and rehearse procedures in the event of an emergency, according to the agency.

When using commercial dive vessels, divers should make sure the mariner is credentialed and inspected by the USCG. Divers should also curb potential fire hazards on the boat and be mindful of emergency exits on vessels and dive flags when moving in certain areas.

Mariners must report diving incidents to Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach on VHF channel 16 or at 310-521-3801.

POLB Chief is the New AAPA Board Chairman

Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero will serve a two-year term as the chairman of the board of the American Association of Port Authorities.

Cordero was installed at AAPA’s virtual 2020 Annual Convention on Sept. 21-23, taking over for Port of Grays Harbor Executive Director Gary G. Nelson.

Newly elected directors include Port of Vancouver USA CEO Julianna Marler for the U.S. North Pacific Ports Region; Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka for the U.S. South Pacific Ports Region; Saint John Port Authority President and CEO James Quinn for the Canada Ports Region; and Northwest Seaport Alliance CEO John G. Wolfe (representing the North Pacific Ports Region), for the At-Large seat.

In addition to new elected leadership, AAPA is enacting changes recently voted by its members.

That includes expanding board member terms to two years, streamlining the number of board members from 45 to 11, doing away with the executive committee, mandating that only port CEOs or their equals serve and limiting to two the number of positions available to any of AAPA’s seven board-represented geographic regions and special representation areas, according to AAPA.

AAPA will also add an Academia membership category and a Supply Chain Partners category to diversify its network. “By restructuring and modernizing AAPA’s Board of Directors, I believe it’ll vastly improve the association’s ability with regard to policymaking and other governance issues, enabling us to be more nimble, efficient and effective as a hemispheric membership association,” said AAPA President and CEO Christopher J. Connor “In reducing the size of our board, we still have a diversity of ports of varying sizes and geographic locations represented. I think we’ve struck just the right balance so all voices of our member ports will be heard in crafting AAPA policy and programs, both now and in the years to come.”