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Summary for February 25 - February 29, 2008:
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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

N. Korea holds Russian cargo ship

 ARMED NORTH Korean coast guard personnel Feb 23 boarded a Russian cargo ship in the Sea of Japan and detained the ship and its 25 crew members, according to the Russian general consul in the North Korean city of Chongjin.

 Consul general Valery Valkovich said he had hoped to meet with the detained crew of the vessel but was not allowed by the North Korean authorities on the grounds that “the investigation is not yet over,” said Valkovich.

 The crew informed the Vladivostok Rescue Coordinating Center by radio that the ship, the Lidiya Demesh, had been stopped by the North Korean coast guard near Cape Masudan, 3-5 miles off shore, said center spokesman Vladimir Yeroshkin.

 “The 25-member crew are under arrest. They have no access to the radio set,” Yeroshkin said.

 The Russian news agency RIA Novosti said the ship was carrying used automobiles from the Japanese port of Hamata to Vladivostok.

 Web site:

 RIA Novosti

Prince Rupert eyes logistics flexibility

 A PRINCE RUPERT Port Authority vice president told a Prince Rupert and District Chamber of Commerce luncheon last week that it has become apparent since the opening of the new Fairview Container Terminal last year that shippers need more flexibility in warehousing and logistics.

 “What has become really apparent in the months since the opening is the complexity of the industry,” said Shaun Stevenson, vice president of business development and marketing for the port authority.

 Currently, one service is calling at Fairview —the CKYH Alliance comprised of COSCO, “K” Line, Yang Ming, and Hanjin shipping lines. Sixteen vessels have called at the terminal since its opening.

“What we don’t have is those next layers of service, the stuffing and reload, warehousing and cold storage that create that port load opportunity in Prince Rupert that can stimulate that export traffic and also accommodate other services associated with inbound traffic to deal with their supply chain management,” said Stevenson.

Andrew Hamilton, manager of business development for the port authority, commented, “We are not building a dock, we are building a supply chain. This summarizes our approach … .”

 Web site:

 Prince Rupert Port Authority

POLA approves two community projects

 THE PORT OF Los Angeles Harbor Commission has approved $3.6mn for two community projects in Wilmington — a historical maritime transportation exhibit at the Banning Museum and an aquatics center at the Wilmington YMCA that will include a new swimming pool.

 “These two projects are great examples of the port’s commitment to creating development that enriches the culture and quality of life in surrounding communities,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Geraldine Knatz, Ph.D.

The two projects were recommended by the Port Community Advisory Committee and will be funded under the port’s Community Aesthetic Mitigation Program.

The transportation exhibit will be a permanent exhibition spotlighting the transportation history of the Los Angeles harbor from 1850 to 1915.

 Housed inside the Banning Residence Museum — a national, state, and local historical landmark — the $900,000 exhibit will trace the development of harbor transportation systems “through the Spanish and Mexican era, the early American era, the era of railroad development, and beyond,” said the port.

 The Community Aesthetic Mitigation Program was established in 2003 as part of the China Shipping settlement agreement between the city of Los Angeles and the National Resources Defense Council, with the goal of developing and funding aesthetic mitigation projects in Wilmington and San Pedro.

 Web site:

 Port of Los Angeles

World’s coastal waters under siege

 SOME 84% of the world’s coasts are being colonized by foreign aquatic species, according to a Nature Conservancy study published this week in the journal Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment.

 San Francisco Bay is the most invaded aquatic region on Earth, the study finds, with 85 invasive species in its waters, 66% of them considered harmful.

 “The scale of this problem is vast,” said Jennifer Molnar, conservation scientist at The Nature Conservancy and lead author of the study, “Assessing the Global Threat of Invasive Species to Marine Biodiversity.”

 “Once alien species become established in marine habitats, it can be nearly impossible to remove them,” Molnar said. “The best way to address these invaders is to prevent their arrival or introduction in the first place.”

 The non-native species that have been introduced throughout the world’s oceans damage economies by diminishing fisheries, fouling ships’ hulls, and clogging intake pipes — and can even directly impact human health by causing disease, according to the study.

 The study analyzes the problem on a global scale by synthesizing information on 329 aquatic species, drawing information from more than 350 data sources.

 Web site:

 Nature Conservancy study

CMA CGM upgrades service

 CMA CGM Feb 25 announced a service upgrade linking Asia to India and the Middle East Gulf with the introduction of a new, complementary string to its CIMEX service beginning the end of March.

 The twice-weekly service coverage from Asia will now be split into two strings: String 1 will be dedicated to serve the markets of the Gulf States, Iran, and Iraq; String 2 will be dedicated to Colombo and WC India supplemented with a call in the Gulf, the company said.

 The rotation schedule for String 1 will be Ningbo, Shanghai, Fuqing/Fuzhou, and Chiwan, China; Port Kelang, Malaysia; Jebel Ali and Khorfakkan, UAE; Bandar Abbas, Iran; and Port Kelang.

 The String 2 rotation will be Xiamen, Shantou, and Chiwan, China; Laem Chebang, Thailand; Port Kelang, Malaysia; Colombo, Sri Lanka; Nhava Sheva, India; Jebel Ali, UAE; and Port Kelang.

 Each string will be operated with five vessels, each with an average capacity of 2,500 TEUs, and in cooperation with the CMA CGM affiliates ANL and CNC, the company said.

 Web site:


K + N, Beiersdorf sign agreement

 GERMAN cosmetic goods company Beiersdorf AG and logistics service provider Kuehne + Nagel Feb 25 signed an agreement in which K + N will take over the management of Beiersdorf’s main warehouse in Hamburg for the German market as well as handle exports to the international cosmetics group’s foreign affiliates starting in June 2008.

 “This new co-operation will bring more flexibility and is a key step towards meeting the constantly rising demands of the competitive European environment,” said Markus Pinger, Beiersdorf executive board member responsible for logistics.

 “We have significantly improved our international competitiveness by restructuring our supply and production chain in the last two years,” added Pinger.

 One of the key criteria for signing the agreement was the preservation of the 148 jobs at the center as well as the long-term preservation of Hamburg as a logistics location, according to the news release.

 Logistics Center employees can choose to stay with the new employer at the expanding Hamburg logistics location or take over other duties at one of Beiersdorf’s production facilities.

 Web sites:

 Kuehne + Nagel

 Beiersdorf AG

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

St. Lawrence Seaway freezes tolls

 THE ST. LAWRENCE Seaway Management Corp. Feb 19 announced a three-year toll freeze together with a revised tariff structure in order to provide a significant boost to new business growth.

 The new tolls structure underscores the commitment of the SLSMC and Transport Canada to increased use of the Seaway, the company said.

 “By maintaining stable rates through the 2008, 2009, and 2010 seasons and by introducing targeted incentives, we are setting the stage for our stakeholders to aggressively seek new business in an era of escalating costs and to advance their business plans with a greater degree of certainty,” stated Dick Corfe, SLSMC president and CEO.

 A new “Business Incentive Program” targeted at carriers and shippers will allow for a 20% discount on cargo tolls over the course of three years for commodity/origin/destination combinations approved by the corporation as “new business,” SLSMC said.

 To be eligible, a carrier will have to submit an application for the proposed combination to the SLSMC. All containerized cargo movements are eligible for the discount, from 2008 to 2012, the company said.

 Web site:

 St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp.


DHL signs 175,000 sq ft lease

 DHL GLOBAL Forwarding Feb 26 announced that it has leased a 175,000-sq-ft build-to-suit facility in the Houston area from AMB Property Corp.

 AMB IAH Logistics Center II is being developed proximate to Houston Intercontinental Airport (IAH) on land capable of supporting up to “approximately 150,000 sq ft additional development,” the company said.

 The site is located on the main road into the future master-planned international air cargo terminal of IAH, which experienced a 6% increase in total air cargo volumes during 2007 and ranks as one of the top 10 busiest international cargo gateways in North America.

 “DHL relies on AMB for real estate solutions across North America, Europe, and Asia, and we are pleased to continue to win their trust with our customer-oriented development capabilities,” said Steve Callaway, a senior vice president and director of customer development for AMB.

 “The Houston industrial market continues to thrive, and given its strong multimodal infrastructure and growth in high-value exports, we see sustained demand for modern facilities here,” commented Kim Snyder, AMB’s senior vice president and managing director for southwest region.

 Web site:

 AMB Property Corp.


Tacoma’s new wharf on track

 A PORT of Tacoma contractor drove the last of 795 concrete piles Monday into the Blair Waterway to support a new wharf. The $46mn wharf is part of a facility planned for the 83-acre former Kaiser Aluminum property on the east side of the Blair.

 Long work days were necessary, the port said, to complete the in-water work before the annual fish migration season begins.

 Manson Construction of Seattle worked 12-hr days Mondays through Saturdays since late August to drive the 142-ft-long concrete piling, made by Concrete Technology, on the Tacoma Tideflats.

 “We’re grateful to our neighbors in Northeast Tacoma for their understanding during this first phase of construction,” said Port of Tacoma Commission President Dick Marzano. “The improvements will serve our community well into the future.”

 This phase of construction was the first of more than $800mn in redevelopment along the Blair-Hylebos Peninsula between now and 2012. Future plans include a relocated and expanded terminal for Totem Ocean Trailer Express (TOTE) and a new marine terminal for NYK Line.

 The plans also include substantial road and railway improvements as well as a privately owned terminal planned by SSA Marine and the Puyallup Tribe of Indians.

 Web site:

 Port of Tacoma

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Teamsters reach agreement with DHL Express

 THE INTERNATIONAL Brotherhood of Teamsters Feb 27 said that its national negotiating committee has reached a tentative national agreement with DHL Express, a unit of Deutsche Post.

 “This agreement is truly historic. It is the first new national master agreement negotiated in the transportation sector in decades,” said Brad Slawson Sr., chair of the Teamsters national negotiating committee. The agreement will cover thousands of DHL workers nationwide.

 “Negotiations in recent months have been as complex as any I’ve been involved with, but I am confident that we negotiated the best possible agreement for our members,” added Slawson.

 In accordance with Teamster procedure, the first step in ratifying the tentative agreement is to present the pact at the national two-man meeting, which will be scheduled soon, said the union.

 The “two-person meeting” involves two representatives from each local with DHL members, who review the new agreement and vote to endorse the tentative agreement.

 Once the tentative agreement is approved, materials concerning the national contract will be mailed to members’ homes and posted to the Teamster Web site, said the union.

 Web sites:

 International Brotherhood of Teamsters

 DHL Express


Tacoma orders Kalmar straddle carriers

 THE PORT OF TACOMA has ordered seven CSC 350 straddle carriers from Kalmar Industries for the port’s on-dock intermodal rail operations, Kalmar announced Feb 26.

 The units will be used to load and unload double-stack container cars at Tacoma’s extensive on-dock rail facility. Delivery of the machines is scheduled for October 2008.

The straddle carriers, which have a 40-tonne single lift capability, will be engineered to stack containers three high.

 Kalmar Industries has been supplying straddle carriers to the Port of Tacoma since 1986 and has built a very close working relationship with the port, said Kalmar.

 Tacoma became the world’s first on-dock rail operation using only straddle carriers, and Kalmar and the port authority jointly produced the world’s first straddle carrier operator training video.

 As a leading operator of straddle cranes, the Port of Tacoma has trained operators from other ports across the US to work safely.

“This new order further extends Kalmar’s partnership with the Port of Tacoma, adding to the fleet of 26 Kalmar straddle carriers already employed at the port,” said Leif Wallin, president, Kalmar Americas.

 Web sites:

 Port of Tacoma

 Kalmar Industries

Coast Guard introduces Rescue 21

 THE US COAST GUARD is introducing a new maritime emergency system, named Rescue 21, to replace the aging National Distress and Response system built in the 1970s.

 Rescue 21 will be the nation’s primary maritime emergency system for the more than 78mn boaters and 13mn vessels that navigate coastal and intercoastal waters.

 US Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Thad Allen, in a recent visit to General Dynamics C4 Systems, the prime contractor for the program, said the Rescue 21 program is operationally ready and is now operating in 11 US regions, covering 12,000 miles of coastline

 “Rescue 21 is helping the Coast Guard take the ‘search’ out of search and rescue. We’re proud of the strong partnership we have developed with General Dynamics to put this vital lifesaving tool into the hands of Coast Guard men and women,” commented Admiral Allen.

 Once fully implemented, Rescue 21 will provide communications along the US coastline, Great Lakes region, Hawaii, Guam, and San Juan, the Coast Guard said.

 Web site:

 Rescue 21

Friday, February 29, 2008

Federal court bars ship emissions rule

 A FEDERAL appeals court ruled unanimously Feb 27 that California regulators cannot enforce a rule to limit sulfur emissions from ocean-going ships as they enter and dock at the state’s ports without approval from the US Environmental Protection Agency.

 The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated a lower court’s injunction barring the state from enforcing its Marine Vessel Rules.

 The lawsuit was brought by the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, a ship owners group.

 “This lawsuit was not about whether emissions from vessels should be reduced but about who should have the jurisdiction to impose and enforce requirements on international trade,” the PMSA said.

 Most ship auxiliary engines burn a dirtier bunker fuel to provide power for docked vessels and often run for several days as the ship is unloaded.

 The California Air Resources Board never sought or obtained EPA approval to enforce the rules, according to the ruling.

 “In the end, the (federal) Clean Air Act preempts the Marine Vessel Rules and requires California to obtain EPA authorization prior to enforcement,” the court stated in its opinion.

 Web site:

 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals


Seattle port unveils reorganization

 PORT OF SEATTLE CEO Tay Yoshitani Feb 28 announced a major reorganization at the port.

 “The move reflects the CEO’s desire to increase the accountability of the port’s procurement and construction management,” said the announcement. The recent state auditor’s performance audit criticized the port’s oversight of building projects.

 The changes to the organization include creation of a new Capital Development Division, which will house existing engineering and construction functions as well as the new position of Central Procurement Officer, a position recommended by the audit report.

 Yoshitani will hire a Managing Director of Development to supervise the approximately 200 staff members consolidated from the port’s operating divisions. The new position will be part of the port’s executive team, reporting directly to the CEO. Yoshitani expects the new division to be fully operational by summer.

 “The Port of Seattle is reforming how we do business — and this change will provide the Commission and Tay with more direct oversight of our construction practices,” said Port Commission President John Creighton.

 State Auditor Brian Sonntag, whose office released the audit in December, said the changes are encouraging.

 Web site:

 Port of Seattle


Chief engineer pleads guilty

 THE FORMER chief engineer of an American-flagged car-carrier Feb 28 pleaded guilty in federal court to criminal charges of conspiracy and making a false statement in a ship’s Oil Record Book.

 Patrick Brown, the former chief engineer of the M/V Fidelio, renamed the M/V Patriot, was employed by Pacific Gulf Marine Inc., a vessel operator based in Gretna, LA.

 “The defendant was involved in the deliberate overboard discharge of oil-contaminated bilge waste into the ocean for multiple years and lied to the Coast Guard to cover up his illegal actions,” said Ronald J. Tenpas, Assistant Attorney General of the US Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division.

 “Corporations and crews should beware that polluting and lying to the authorities will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” Tenpas said.

 Brown is the fifth chief engineer to plead guilty or be convicted by a jury in the continuing investigation.

 PGM previously pleaded guilty to its role in deliberately discharging hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil-contaminated bilge waste from four of its giant car-carrier ships.

 The company was sentenced in Jan 2007 to pay $1mn in criminal fines and $500,000 in community service and serve three years of probation under the terms of an environmental compliance plan.

 Web site:

 US Justice Department