Today's Cargo News Archives
Summary for April 7 - April 11, 2008:
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Monday, April 7, 2008

No update today

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Longshoreman killed at Long Beach

 CARGO handling at one of the terminals at America’s second busiest port ground to a halt Apr 4 following the dockside death of Carlos Rivera, 73, a longshore worker with more than 40 years experience on the waterfront.

 Rivera was working against a ship at the California United Terminal at the Port of Long Beach when he was struck and killed, hit by a forklift carrying rolls of sheet metal, according to a press release from the ILWU.

 This is the second fatality in Southern California since 2005, ILWU officials said. More than a dozen longshore workers have been killed on the West Coast during the past six years.

 “Longshore work is dangerous, but it doesn’t have to be deadly,” said Joseph Cortez, Local 13 president of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union that represents more than 15,000 longshore workers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

 The ILWU, currently negotiating a new contract with the Pacific Maritime Association that covers 25,000 longshore workers at 29 West Coast ports in California, Oregon, and Washington, is seeking stronger safety provisions in the contract, union officials said.

 The terminal operators agreed to a request by the ILWU to close the terminal for 24 hours out of respect for Rivera’s family and co-workers.

 Web site:

 Port of Long Beach


IMO OKs SOx amendment

 THE MARINE Environment Protection Committee of the International Maritime Organization Apr 4 announced that it has approved proposed amendments to the MARPOL Annex VI regulations to reduce harmful emissions from ships.

 The main changes would see a progressive reduction in sulfur oxide (SOx) emissions from ships, with the global sulfur cap reduced initially to 3.50% (from the current 4.50%), effective Jan 1, 2012; then reduced progressively to 0.50%, effective Jan 1, 2020, subject to a feasibility review to be completed no later than 2018.

 The limits applicable in Sulfur Emission Control Areas would be reduced to 1.00%, beginning Mar 1, 2010 (from the current 1.50%); to be further reduced to 0.10%, effective Jan 1, 2015.

 Progressive reductions in nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from marine engines were also agreed to, with the most stringent controls on so-called “Tier III” engines, i.e., those installed on ships constructed on or after Jan 1, 2016, operating in Emission Control Areas.

 Speaking at the close of MEPC, IMO Secretary-General Efthimios E. Mitropoulos praised the excellent progress made during the week-long MEPC session in IMO’s long-standing efforts to limit and reduce pollution of the atmospheric environment and thanked and congratulated all the parties concerned.

 Web site:

 International Maritime Organization


Panama Canal awards dredging contract

 THE PANAMA Canal Authority (ACP) Apr 4 announced that it has awarded the third and largest of its expansion program contract, to dredge the Pacific sea entrance, to Belgian-based Dredging International for $177.5mn. 

 The expansion program will build a new lane along the Panama Canal through the construction of a new set of locks, which will double capacity and allow more traffic and longer, wider ships.

 The dredging of the Pacific sea entrance is essential to provide enough draft and width for the longer, wider ships, the ACP said.

 Dredging work in the Pacific sea entrance is expected to begin during 3Q 2008. When expansion concludes, the dredging project will widen the Canal’s approximately 9-mile-long navigation channels to a minimum of 715 ft and deepen them to a maximum level of -51 ft Mean Low Water Springs (MLWS).  

 “As the third and largest expansion program contract in terms of volume, geographical spread, and price awarded to date, the selection of Dredging International is a critical next step in the creation of the new lane,” said Jorge Quijano, ACP executive vice president of engineering and program management.

 Web site:

 Panama Canal Authority

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

State urged to get moving on new port in Jasper County

The Post and Courier
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
The head of one of South Carolina's most important corporate partners that's a leading customer of the Port of Charleston said Tuesday that the state must expand its maritime infrastructure — and that means building a port in Jasper County.

Jim Micali, chairman and president of Michelin North America, said the state's port has played a key role in the tiremaker's success since the French manufacturer opened its Upstate plant in 1973.

Today, the company moves the equivalent of more than 20,000 20-foot-long cargo containers through the Port of Charleston every year. For the State Ports Authority to meet its projected growth in container volume of 4 percent a year over the next decade, its long-term future likely lies away from Charleston, Micali said.

The SPA fought a long-running legal battle with Jasper County officials over which entity had the right to build a

massive container terminal on the Palmetto State side of the Savannah River.

That tussle effectively ended a year ago, when the governors of South Carolina and Georgia announced the two states would jointly build and run a $500 million-plus port on the 1,800-acre site.

Since that announcement last March, the two states have created a task force, made up mostly of officials from the two states ports, to help formulate how the arrangement would work.

Micali, speaking at the 2008 Port Productivity Conference in North Charleston, said the states have taken "an excellent first step" to get the project finally moving forward.

"Now the heavy lifting begins," he said.

History shows that it takes at least a decade for such a project to become a reality, Micali said. For a port in Jasper to be effective 10 years from now, the business community that will use it must be involved in the planning.

Micali called on elected officials to work with the business community to compile a viable business case study to examine if such an investment is justified, how it should be paid for, the amount of private dollars and how it would compete with other local ports.

"We know well-run ports are economic drivers for the region," Micali said. "We need to ensure we do the same with the Jasper County port.

"There is a lot of expertise available," he added.

Otherwise, he warned, Jasper will be an ineffective port — or worse, it won't get built at all.

Reach Peter Hull at 937-5594 or phull@postandcourier

San Diego partners to save energy

 THE PORT of San Diego Apr 8 announced that it is partnering with San Diego Gas & Electric to ensure that the port is conserving energy throughout its operations.

 The announcement was made at the Board of Port Commissioners meeting, when the board approved a memorandum of understanding to establish a sustainable energy partnership between the port and SDG&E.

 The partnership is designed as part of the port’s Green Port Program, which seeks to improve water quality in San Diego Bay, conserve energy in port operations, and reduce pollution from port sources.

 In the next several months, the port and SDG&E will work together to design programs geared toward conserving energy and reducing greenhouse gases from port operations. A report detailing possible strategies will be released this December.

 “This is a monumental public-private partnership,” said Michael Bixler, chair of the Board of Port Commissioners.

 The partnership is just one element in an overall port strategy to protect and improve the environment of San Diego Bay and its surrounding tidelands, port authorities said.

 Web site:

 Port of San Diego


Cummins opens plant in China                      

 CUMMINS Apr 8 announced the opening of its first fuel systems manufacturing site outside of North America, the Cummins Fuel Systems Wuhan Plant.

 Wuhan, the capital city of Central China’s Hubei Province, also is home to a regional Cummins service center and a technical center joint venture owned by Cummins and Dongfeng Motor Co.

 Cummins has made an initial investment of $10mn into the plant, which will manufacture Cummins Common Rail fuel pumps and CELECT injectors/fuel pumps, primarily for the China market, the company said.

 John Watkins, president of Cummins East Asia, commented, “The Cummins Wuhan Fuel Systems Plant is an important part of our long-term commitment to bring clean power technology and products to our partners and customers in the Chinese market.”

 When Cummins opens its Emission Solutions exhaust after-treatment plant in Beijing later this year, Cummins will be the only foreign maker capable of manufacturing products in all four critical engine sub-systems — filtration, air handling, fuel systems, and exhaust after-treatment — in the emerging China market, the company said.

 Web site:



Horizon Lines honored for sea rescue

 HORIZON Lines Inc., the nation’s leading domestic ocean shipping and integrated logistics company, has received the AMVER-Assisted Rescue at Sea Award for the “extraordinary courage and seamanship of the Horizon Falcon crew.”

 AMVER Program Director Capt. Christopher Hall presented the award Apr 2 to the Horizon Falcon’s Capt. Tom McDorr at the 2008 Lloyd’s List London Awards.

 Capt. McDorr and the crew of the Horizon Falcon “courageously assisted in the rescue of Chinese crew members of the Panamanian-flagged ship Hai Tong No. 7” after it sank in typhoon-heavy seas 300 nautical miles northwest of Guam last July.

 The Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue System (AMVER), sponsored by the US Coast Guard, is a unique, computer-based, voluntary global ship-reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities to arrange for assistance to persons in distress at sea.

 Horizon Lines has participated in AMVER since the rescue system’s establishment in 1958, and all 21 of the company’s vessels are enrolled, the company said.

 More than 450 guests from the international maritime community attended the London dinner.

 Web site:

 Horizon Lines Inc.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

AAPA supports Colombia trade pact

 AMERICAN Association of Port Authorities President and CEO Kurt Nagle announced the association’s full support of the Colombia Free Trade Agreement Apr 3, noting that “free and open trade is vital to the well-being of the United States and its ally countries.”

 The agreement has been submitted by the Bush administration to the US Congress for consideration and approval.

 “This free and fair trade agreement with Colombia is an opportunity not only to expand the movement of goods and services between the US and the second most populous country in South America, but it will also strengthen hemispheric ties and provide important economic benefits for US exporters,” said Nagle.

 He noted that, currently, more than 90% of Colombia’s exports enter the US duty free. However, American farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, and workers face duties up to 35% when exporting their products to Colombia.

 Nagle noted that, according to the US International Trade Commission, passage of this agreement would result in approximately a $1.1bn annual increase in US exports to Colombia due to tariff reductions.

 The AAPA represents 160 of the leading public port authorities in the US, Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean.

 Web site:

 American Association of Port Authorities

Port of Seattle details procurement policy

 PORT OF SEATTLE Commissioners at a public meeting Apr 8 heard the details of how the recently announced centralized procurement department will function within the organization.

 Port of Seattle CEO Tay Yoshitani recently announced the creation of a central procurement office and appointment of an acting chief procurement officer in response to a critical state audit.

 The chief procurement office will oversee all procurement for the port, including construction contracting and professional and personal service agreements.

 The CPO will also be responsible for implementing the changes included in HB 3274, legislation which clarifies some procurement authority for ports in Washington state. The department will be supervised by a recently created managing director position.

 “I am very pleased with how quickly our CEO moved to implement a centralized procurement process,” said Commission President John Creighton. “The Port Commission is committed to increasing transparency and efficiency, and the central procurement office is integral to changing how the port does business.”

The port’s Audit Response Action Plan, which clarifies how the organization will implement each of the audit recommendations, is available on the port’s Web site.

 Web site:

 Port of Seattle

US-Japan Green Conference set            

 THE JAPAN AMERICA Society and the Port of Los Angeles Apr 9 announced that they will present the Second Annual US-Japan Green Conference on May 14 in Torrance, CA.

 Japan is a world leader for energy conservation, reduction of the use of natural resources, recycling, and the elimination of hazardous pollutants, the port said.

 “Regionally, the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach have worked hand-in-hand to create the world’s most comprehensive global seaport strategy to cut air pollution and reduce health risks,” commented Douglas Erber, president of the Japan America Society of Southern California.

 Expert panelists for the forum include Teresa Scognamillo of the Port of Los Angeles, Heather Tomley of the Port of Long Beach, Dr. Kenichi Sato of Sumitomo Electric Industries, and Benjamin Collinwood of Sanyo Energy (USA).

 Discussions will focus on “the business of green technology and products, clean air initiatives, and environmental marketing strategies that will shape the future of business and benefit not just the US and Japan, but the entire world,” the announcement said.

 For more information, call (213) 627-6217, ext. 205 or e-mail

Web sites:

 Japan America Society

 Port of Los Angeles

Friday, April 11, 2008

BNSF zero-emission cranes at Seattle intermodal

 BNSF RAILWAY Co. Apr 10 announced that it has added capacity at its Seattle International Gateway intermodal facility by installing four wide-span, electric, rail-mounted gantry cranes that produce zero emissions on site.

 BNSF is the first railroad in North America to install these cranes, which in addition to producing zero emissions on site, allow more flexibility, increase capacity, and reduce the need for diesel trucks to move containers within the facility, the company said.

 “The installation of these wide-span cranes has nearly doubled the capacity at our SIG facility and reduces our impact on the environment while supporting the growth of international commerce at the Port of Seattle,” said Mike Burke, assistant vice president, BNSF intermodal hub operations.

 The cranes, significantly wider than traditional cranes used at intermodal facilities, span three tracks and have the capability to stack containers and load and unload trucks and railcars. They have increased throughput by about 30% at BNSF’s SIG facility, the company said.

 Additionally, these cranes are quieter and have the ability to regenerate power each time they lower a load.

 Web site:

 BNSF Railway Co.

NWA offers new W. Med service

 THE NEW WORLD Alliance carriers — APL, Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), and Mitsui O.S.K. Lines (MOL), along with CMA CGM — Apr 8 announced the start of a new joint West Mediterranean service starting Apr 26.

 The new service “offers shippers access and fast transit times to the growing Middle East and Mediterranean regions,” the companies said.

 Eight vessels will be deployed on the service. The NWA will operate six vessels while CMA CGM will operate two. Capacity for these eight ships will be between 4,000 and 4,500 TEUs, the companies said.

 Port rotation for the MED service is Shanghai, Ningbo, Hong Kong, and Chiwan, China; Singapore; Port Klang, Malaysia; Damietta, Egypt; Genoa, Italy; Barcelona, Spain; Fos, France; Damietta; Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Port Klang; Singapore, Chiwan, and Shanghai.

 The New World Alliance member lines APL, HMM, and MOL serve more than 40 ports using in excess of 100 containerships in the major East-West container trades.

Norfolk Southern initiates Pacesetter service          

 NORFOLK SOUTHERN Apr 10 announced that it is initiating a new electronic commerce service called Thoroughbred Pacesetter, available to customers beginning Apr 14.

 Pacesetter gives Norfolk Southern customers “the opportunity to enjoy unprecedented direct management of freight car orders and releases, increased visibility of the railcar pipeline, and detailed local railcar inventory for improved logistics management,” the company said.

 Customers who sign up for Pacesetter also enjoy the benefit of service-based demurrage, an industry first that directly links Norfolk Southern service to demurrage credits.

 Pacesetter is a direct link to the railroad’s yard inventory and car-reporting systems, providing customers with more detailed, real-time visibility of shipments and direct control over ordering and releasing railcars.

 Pacesetter also “enables customers to better manage their shipping costs by having Norfolk Southern service directly linked to demurrage and storage credits,” the company said. Credits are based on the original Norfolk Southern ETA (estimated time of availability).

 Norfolk Southern operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East and is North America’s largest rail carrier of metals and automotive products, according to the press release.

 Web site:

 Norfolk Southern

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