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Summary for May 19 - May 23, 2008:
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Monday, May 19, 2008

DHS grants $388.6 million for port security

 THE U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security May 16 announced more than $844 million in grant awards as part of its Infrastructure Protection Activities grant program, including $388.6 million in funds for the Port Security Grant Program.

 The seven highest risk port areas that comprise Group I will receive $220.9 million, which is a 26% increase from last year, DHS said.

 There are 40 Group II port areas that will receive a total of $138.1 million, and 16 Group III port areas will be awarded $17.3 million. Other port areas will receive a total of almost $9.9 million, and five ferry systems will be awarded more than $2.4 million, DHS said.

 Grant awards will “strengthen security at ports and enhance transit, trucking and intercity bus systems,” DHS said.

 The Port Security Grant Program supports “sustainable, risk-based efforts to enhance access control and credentialing, protect against an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) and other non-conventional attacks, and conduct exercises for disaster-response scenarios,” DHS said.


 U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security

World’s most powerful electric truck introduced

 LOS ANGELES Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa May 16 joined officials from the Port of Los Angeles and the South Coast Air Quality Management District for the introduction of the world’s most powerful heavy duty electric truck, according to an announcement from the port.

 Built as a demonstration project co-funded by the port and SCAQMD, the 30-ton electric short-haul drayage truck — the first of its kind at any port worldwide — can pull a 60,000-pound cargo container at a top speed of 40 mph and has a range between 30 to 60 miles per battery charge, the port said.

 The battery charger can charge up to four electric trucks simultaneously in four hours and can also provide up to 60% of the charge in one hour to meet peak demands during daily operations, the port said.

 Calling the truck a “zero emissions workhorse,” the port said that it “could be a precursor to future short-range port and cargo terminal drayage operations worldwide.”

 To advance this vision, the port will place the first significant production order of these trucks with Balqon Corp. to take delivery of 20 electric container terminal tractors, or “hostlers,” and five on-road electric drayage trucks over the next 12 months.


 Port of Los Angeles

 Balqon Corp.

Guangzhou Shipyard in 2.1 billion yuan contract

 GUANGZHOU Shipyard International Co. May 15 announced that it has won two shipbuilding contracts worth 2.1 billion yuan from China Shipping Passenger Liner Co. and its joint venture company, China Shipping Gang Lian Maritime Co.

  The two contracts in total call for four ro/ro passenger vessels to be built starting in 2009 and finished by 2011, with delivery to the owners between 2010 and 2012.

 The contracts have been approved by the Board of Directors of the company. The contracts, worth 2.1 billion yuan ($300.5 million), will become effective upon signing.

 Guangzhou Shipyard said the construction of the vessels will improve the company’s product structure as well as help towards achieving the company’s strategic goal of “developing high-tech ships and improve its competitiveness and risk management.”

 In the announcement, the company said that “presently there is a shortage of materials supply and skilled human resources in the shipbuilding market. The company will fully exert its advantages and adjust resources to ensure the smooth implementation of the contracts.”


 Guangzhou Shipyard International Co. Ltd.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

DHL aids Myanmar cyclone victims

 DHL, the world’s leading express and logistics company, May 19 announced that it has signed an MOU with the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs to provide assistance from DHL’s Disaster Response Team–Asia Pacific in Myanmar.

 Under the terms of the memorandum, DHL’s Disaster Response Team will manage the common humanitarian warehouse identified by the United Nations for three weeks. The facility is a 3,050 square meter warehouse located 25 minutes from the Yangon airport, southwest of the city.

 “Time is truly critical. In these urgent situations, we are committed to making a difference and contributing the best way we know how — by helping resolve logistical bottlenecks and ensuring aid gets to people in distress as swiftly as possible,” said Dan McHugh, CEO, DHL Express–Asia Pacific.

 DHL’s immediate tasks for the common humanitarian warehouse include engaging local workers for assistance, setting up communications for the site, and restoring power at the facility so that staff can work through the night in shifts to distribute aid as swiftly as possible.

 Worldwide, DHL has set up three Disaster Response Teams, which are composed of employee volunteers who are experts in the areas of goods handling, warehouse management, inventory and customs.

 Web site:


Georgia Ports tonnage way up

 THE GEORGIA PORTS Authority handled a total of more than 21.4 million tons of cargo for all terminal facilities, including Bainbridge, Brunswick, Columbus and Savannah, in the first 10 months of FY 2008 (July 2007–April 2008), a 20.6% increase.

 Gov. Sonny Perdue May 19 made the announcement of the GPA’s record growth, putting the authority on track to record its most successful year ever.

 “Georgia’s ports are dynamic economic engines that continue to thrive even during tough economic times,” said Gov. Perdue.

 “The completion of the Container Berth 8 and 9 project and the addition of four new cranes in Savannah as well as the expansion of the grain and rail facilities in Brunswick have sharpened Georgia’s advantages over its competitors,” added the governor.

 The Port of Savannah is now the fourth busiest and fastest growing container terminal in the United States, said port authorities.

 The Garden City Terminal in Savannah is also poised to post a record-breaking year with more than 2.2 million TEUs handled in the first 10 months of FY 2008, a 19% increase compared with the previous year.

 Web site:

 Georgia Ports Authority

Panama Canal posts Q2 metrics

 THE PANAMA CANAL Authority (ACP) May 19 released Q2 operational metrics for FY 2008, with total canal transits and tonnage dropping slightly but transits of passenger and dry bulk segments increasing significantly.

 These metrics are based on operations from January through March 2008, the second quarter of the ACP’s 2008 fiscal year, and are compared with Q2 of FY 2007.

 Total canal transits decreased 2% during Q2 — from 4,053 to 3,971. Panama Canal/Universal Measurement System (PC/UMS) tonnage also dropped 2.6% — from 80.4 million PC/UMS tons to 78.4 million PC/UMS tons.

 Passenger transits increased 34.8% — from 92 to 124 — while dry bulk transits rose 6.7%, from 586 to 625, and dry bulk cargo tonnage increased 10.4%, from 12.3 to 13.5 million PC/UMS tons.

 “The ACP is on strong operational and financial footing, and we anticipate continued steady progress with the Canal Expansion Program and other modernization projects. Work is advancing on-time and on-budget, and, in fact, some projects are moving ahead of schedule,” said Rodolfo R. Sabonge, ACP vice president of research and market analysis.

 Web site:

 Panama Canal Authority

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

CSIS celebrates National Maritime Day

 THE CONTAINER SHIPPING Information Service (CSIS) celebrates National Maritime Day tomorrow, May 22, and calls on consumers to imagine life without the many everyday items made available to them by the container shipping industry.

 CSIS was launched in January 2008 and comprises the largest 24 container shipping companies across the world.

 International trade accounts for 25% of the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to CSIS.

 Through the use of containerships, more than $5.5 billion worth of goods move in and out of U.S. ports everyday, according to the American Association of Port Authorities.

 “Almost everything that consumers touch, from door handles, cutlery and furniture to bicycles and television sets have at some point traveled in a container,” CSIS said.

 Ron Widdows, CEO of APL, a CSIS member line, said, “The container shipping industry is pleased to celebrate National Maritime Day. The industry is relatively unknown and most people rarely give it a second thought.”

 “Yet, as a result of container shipping, consumers can enjoy a huge range of products from around the world and at prices that would scarcely have been conceivable in earlier times,” Widdows continued.

 Web site:

 Container Shipping Information Service

Long Beach releases EIR/EIS for harbor project

 THE PORT OF LONG BEACH Board of Harbor Commissioners May 19 released a draft environmental impact report/environmental impact statement (EIR/EIS) for the proposed $750-million, 10-year Middle Harbor Redevelopment Project.

 The report is available for 45 days for public review and comment.

 The Middle Harbor redevelopment plan proposes to reconfigure two older, irregularly shaped container shipping terminals to create one rectangular-shaped facility that would operate in a more efficient and environmentally friendly manner.

 The project aims to cut air pollution at the two port terminals by 50% percent or more from existing levels, the port said.

In addition, the project would create about 14,000 new, permanent jobs and generate about 1,000 construction jobs a year during the 10 years of construction, according to the port.

By expanding the Middle Harbor’s on-dock rail infrastructure, and moving more cargo by rail directly from the waterfront, the project would take as many as 1,000 trucks a day off roadways, the port said.

“As proposed in this detailed draft environmental report, the Middle Harbor project would create the most environmentally responsible shipping terminal anywhere in the world,” said Port Executive Director Richard D. Steinke.

 Web site:

 Port of Long Beach

POLB awards $5 million in air quality grants

 TWO PORT OF LONG BEACH container-cargo terminals will receive $5 million in grants from the port to convert diesel-powered cargo cranes to electricity for substantial air pollution improvements.

 The Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners May 19 approved two grants of $2.5 million each to help fund the electrification of 28 diesel-powered rubber-tired gantry cranes (RTGs) and reduce air pollution by about 120 tons a year.

 The port has awarded the grants to Total Terminals International, which operates at Pier T, and SSA Terminals at Pier A.

The terminals will begin working shortly to convert the cranes to electricity by the end of 2010. The terminal operators will each spend about $2.8 million of their own funds on the project, mostly for operational and infrastructure needs. 

 The grant program was established to help terminal operators reduce emissions from the diesel-powered machines by converting them to electricity. The grant project aims to accelerate the reduction of pollution from RTGs ahead of the already ambitious goals set by the groundbreaking San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan.

 Web site:

 Port of Long Beach

Thursday, May 22, 2008

PMA, ILWU report on negotiations

 THE INTERNATIONAL Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association May 22 issued the following statement regarding their negotiations on a new waterfront labor contract:

 “With more than one month remaining before the current waterfront labor pact expires, negotiations continue between the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) and the International Longshore Warehouse Union (ILWU).

 “Each side has exchanged and modified proposals as part of the discussions aimed at reaching a fair and reasonable agreement by July 1, 2008, when the current six-year contract is set to expire.”

 The current waterfront contract covers 26,000 ILWU-represented longshore workers at 29 West Coast ports in California, Oregon and Washington. The PMA represents cargo carriers, terminal operators and stevedores operating on the West Coast.

 Web sites:

 International Longshore and Warehouse Union

 Pacific Maritime Association

CMA CGM offers new SEAS loop

 CMA CGM May 22 announced the launching, on June 20, of a new loop on its SEAS service between Asia and the South America East Coast, in partnership with China Shipping (CSCL), Maruba Shipping and “K” LINE. 

 “The coverage of the SEAS service will be significantly improved” with the implementation of two complementary strings (SEAS I and SEAS II), each operating with 10 vessels of an average nominal capacity of 2500 TEUs, the company said.

 CMA CGM will deploy a total of nine vessels, CSCL five, Maruba four and “K” Line two.

 The respective weekly rotation of each loop will be as follows:


Qingdao – Pusan - Shanghai – Xiamen – Chiwan – Port Kelang – Rio de Janeiro – Santos – Buenos Aires – Montevideo – Rio Grande – Itajaí – Santos – Port Kelang – Hong Kong


Shanghai – Ningbo – Hong Kong – Shekou – Port Kelang – Santos – Buenos Aires – Sao Francisco do Sul – Paranagua – Santos – Rio de Janeiro – Durban – Port Kelang – Hong Kong – Shanghai.

 Web site:


Schneider rolls out Western regional service

 SCHNEIDER NATIONAL, a leading provider of transportation, intermodal and logistics services, is now presenting customers in the Western U.S. with a new shipping option: Schneider Regional service.

 The service is designed “to effectively meet customers’ rapidly growing short-haul shipping demands,” Schneider said.

 The new Schneider Regional service is already providing service to the seven-state area of Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, Oregon, Utah and Washington.

 Its fleet — which has grown to 600 units — is based out of regional centers in Fontana, Calif.; Portland, Ore.; Salt Lake City, Utah; and French Camp, Calif. These centers serve as hubs for the customer service representatives and drivers dedicated solely to Schneider Regional.

 Marc Rogers, who joined Schneider after a successful career running Knight Transportation’s largest operating division, is leading Schneider’s new regional offering.

 “With the rise of retailer distribution centers and hub-and-spoke models, many of today’s shippers are averaging a length of haul of less than 500 miles per shipment,” said Rogers.

 “Schneider Regional specializes in this kind of move, where drivers who transport these short-haul loads get to know their routes like the back of their hands. This translates into highly efficient service.”

 Web site:

 Schneider National

Friday, May 23, 2008

ALLIANCE for launches

 THE ALLIANCE for Improving America’s Infrastructure May 22 announced the launch of the organization’s new website,

 The site will give “concerned citizens across the country the opportunity to share video, pictures and stories of transportation infrastructure problems and traffic congestion in their communities” while also offering “the ability to recommend real solutions to this growing crisis,” the alliance said. features an interactive map of the United States, where visitors can upload video and pictures of local transportation infrastructure problems such as traffic bottlenecks and roads and bridges in need of repair.

 Beginning this week, families traveling for the Memorial Day holiday can submit their supporting images using their cell phones or PDAs by e-mailing or texting video and photos to

 “America’s roads, bridges, rail system, airports and waterways are crumbling under their own weight, hurting hard-working American families,” said John Engler, president, National Association of Manufacturers.

 “The solution is to modernize, … and will help the American people communicate their frustrations and solutions to transportation policymakers and decision makers in an innovative and interactive way,” added Engler.

 Web site:

Conference to promote dialogue on the new technologies

 THE PORTS of Los Angeles and Long Beach are sponsoring the first ever San Pedro Bay Port Technology Conference to “promote dialogue on the new technologies being incubated in the port complex.”

 Many of these new and exciting technologies are being developed under the ports’ Technology Advancement Program (TAP) and will be spotlighted at the conference, scheduled to take place Wed., May 28, 8:30 a.m.–1 p.m., Doubletree Hotel, 2800 Via Cabrillo Marina, San Pedro.

 Included in the conference are panel discussions on current technology being developed under the TAP program and on the issues involved in start-up manufacturing, marketing and funding.

 Among the key goals of the event are “to provide information about promising technology to current and prospective vendors and to provide an opportunity for vendors, financial experts, potential investors and other interested parties to network and possibly team up,” the port authorities said.

 “This is a great opportunity for entrepreneurs and financiers to meet and discuss prospects related to the green technologies that our ports are pioneering in line with the San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan,” said Geraldine Knatz, Port of Los Angeles executive director.

 Web sites:

 Los Angeles

 Long Beach

Tacoma seeks comments on tideflats development

 THE PORT OF TACOMA has scheduled a public meeting May 29 to gather input as it begins considering the potential environmental impacts of redeveloping terminals, roads and rail on a Tacoma Tideflats peninsula.

 The public meeting is set for 4:30 to 7 p.m., Rm. 104, The Fabulich Center, 3600 Port of Tacoma Rd. 

 Staff from the port’s Sustainable Development department will be available in an open house format to discuss various aspects of the project. Project managers will deliver a short presentation at 6 p.m.

 The meeting is part of the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) public review process for the redevelopment project.

 Redevelopment plans on the Blair-Hylebos Peninsula include relocating the Totem Ocean Trailer Express marine terminal and building a new container terminal for NYK Line.

The plans also include widening of a section of the Blair Waterway and lengthening a wharf at Washington United Terminal

 - Widening a section of the Blair Waterway
- Improving road and rail infrastructure

 The environmental review process provides several opportunities for the public to comment on the proposed project.

  Port of Tacoma

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