COS Weekly News - Friday, 2 February 2024

COS Weekly News - Friday, 2 February 2024

‍‍COS Weekly News - Friday, 2 February 2024

In the news...

‍Local News

Deal reached between Rogers Sugar and PWC Local 8

The union representing 140 workers at the Rogers Sugar refinery in Vancouver says members have ratified a new deal, ending the strike at one of Canada's few large refineries that began on September 28th. The Private Workers of Canada Local 8 union voted with 94 percent in favour to ratify the new five-year agreement. The agreement is said to include increases to health benefits, and wages and provides the work-life balance sought by its members.

Swire Project successfully concludes first Arctic voyage

Swire Projects recently completed its inaugural Arctic voyage, partnering with a Canadian mining company to deliver crucial materials for a mine expansion. The operation utilized the ice-fitted multipurpose vessel Pacific Excellence, boasting a 12,700 DWT and dual 120t cranes, starting from St Lawrence Seaway (Valleyfield) and navigating through the Labrador Sea and Northwest Passage to reach Bathurst Inlet anchorage. Despite the tight timeline and typical operational challenges of Arctic conditions—including 35-knot winds, wildfire smoke, and issues with barge lightering—the collaboration with the client and vendors, underpinned by a partnership approach, was key to overcoming these obstacles. With a strong background in project cargo and breakbulk shipments and a dedicated semi-liner service (NOPAC service) connecting Asia with North America's West Coast, Swire Projects is well-positioned to support future ventures in the Arctic and beyond.

BCTA introduces the Clean Carrier Program

The BC Trucking Association (BCTA) has launched an innovative eco-certification initiative that will acknowledge and certify motor carriers committed to environmentally responsible practices and fostering a cleaner and greener future for the trucking industry.  The Clean Carrier Program is a roadmap for carriers dedicated to sustainable operations. Carriers stand to gain tangible benefits, such as enhanced cost efficiency, increased market competitiveness and strengthened relationships with stakeholders. The Clean Carrier Program also extends a unique opportunity to shippers. Through an independent and rigorous process, shippers can now include sustainable hiring practices when contracting a BC-based transportation company for goods movement.

Farewell to our Past Chair - Rick Barlow

It is with tremendous sadness that we announce the passing of Richard (Rick) Barlow on January 28, 2024, after a brave battle with cancer over the last several years. Rick is most well known as the founder of Colley West Shipping where he served as President and CEO from 1993 until he retired in 2014.  Rick started his shipping career as an agent at Kingsley Navigation and then joined International Chartering Services as their Operations Manager, before venturing on his own with Colley West.  Rick has always given back to the marine community by dedicating countless hours to various activities, consultations, and the boards he served including the Chamber of Shipping, the Pacific Pilotage Authority, and the Vancouver Grain Exchange. During his time on our Board and as Chair between 1992 and 1994, he was actively involved in shaping the marine pollution and prevention regime that exists in Canada today. Rick’s love for golf was well known and on most weekends you would have found him at the Quilchena Golf and Country Club. Our deepest condolences go to his family and many friends. He will be greatly missed.

‍Government News

SSB: Canadian Carbon Intensity Indicator (CCII) reporting requirements

Transport Canada's latest ship safety bulletin mandates new GHG emission reporting for Canadian vessels over 5,000 gross tonnage in Canadian waters, effective January 1, 2024. Vessel representatives must update the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan (SEEMP) and submit fuel consumption data annually for GHG assessment. Compliance and vessel carbon intensity are verified by a Transport Canada Recognized Organization. Vessels receiving poor ratings must implement corrective action plans, with compliance statements issued by May 31 annually.

‍US News

US decision to pause LNG terminal approvals concerning

The US decision to pause new liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal approvals has raised concerns in Canada's energy industry. This move, affecting US Gulf Coast facilities crucial for Canadian LNG exports, is seen as a setback for both US and Canadian energy sectors. The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) and companies like Enbridge Inc. view LNG as a key lower-emission energy source. Biden's election-year decision comes as gas shipments have soared since Russia's invasion of Ukraine. From having zero LNG export facilities a decade ago, the US has grown to become the world's largest LNG exporter, averaging 20.4 billion cubic feet per day in the first half of 2023. However, the White House cites climate risks and greenhouse gas impact concerns for the pause.

ILWU and Portland Terminal settle dispute

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union and International Container Terminal Services settled a more than-decade’s long dispute involving the operation of Portland, Oregon’s sole container terminal which forced the ILWU to file for bankruptcy in September 2023. ICTSI, which alleged it had lost millions of dollars in business due to "unlawful labour actions," will receive $20.5 million under the terms of the settlement. The dispute was an inter-union rivalry that has also more recently appeared in Seattle. Electricians from rival union IBEW Local 48 were assigned the job of plugging and unplugging refrigerated containers, a job the ILWU asserted should be handled by its members while handling and moving containers in Portland.

Maersk appoints new Regional President for North American operations

Charles van der Steene has been appointed as the new Regional President for North America at A.P. Moller – Maersk, effective February 1, 2024. Van der Steene, with extensive experience in the logistics industry, will also join Maersk's Executive Leadership Team. He replaces Narin Phol, who transitions to Chief Product Officer for Logistics & Services in Copenhagen. Maersk's CEO praised van der Steene's track record, highlighting his readiness to lead the company's largest market, North America, and focus on delivering stable, integrated logistics services.

‍International News

Red Sea chaos directly impacting key commodities

Houthi rebel attacks in the Red Sea have disrupted shipping in the Suez Canal, prompting shipping companies to use the longer route around southern Africa. This has led to a 50% reduction in Suez Canal tanker traffic and an expected 8% increase in ocean freight rates. The energy sector is heavily impacted, with oil prices rising and major companies rerouting shipments. LNG trade is also affected, with significant redirections from Qatar. Agriculture, including wheat and coffee shipments, is experiencing diversions and price increases. Minor metals exports from Asia face delays and price hikes. India's sunflower oil imports are expected to decline due to the surge in freight rates. The dry bulk sector, including companies like BHP Group, is also adjusting routes, though most of their shipments do not pass through the affected area.

DP World and Maritime Union of Australia reach agreement

DP World and the Maritime Union of Australia reached an in-principle agreement in the long-running contract dispute that had been crippling container terminal operations in Australia’s four primary ports. The settlement came after three days of facilitated negotiations overseen by the country’s Fair Work Commission and shortly after the MUA reported that it was planning to extend the rolling job actions into a fifth month. The proposed contract still requires approval by the workers, but the MUA immediately filed a notice withdrawing all its planned protected industrial actions. Estimates are that the strike was costing the Australian economy as much as A$50 million (US$33 million) per week and that more than 50,000 containers are backlogged. Reports are that it could take six weeks or more to clear the port congestion.

‍Upcoming Events

Nautical Institute Maritime Arctic Conference 2024

The Nautical Institute’s BC Branch (NIBC) will host the latest iteration of a very successful conference series at the Marriott Inner Harbour Hotel in Victoria, 1-3 May 2024. The theme this year is: “MARITIME ARCTIC: Best Practice, Best Technology, Best People.”  This is a topic with many levels of resonance within the Canadian and global maritime communities. Post-COVID, and in response to the continuing effects of climate change, traffic is again increasing in the Arctic. In Canada, this takes place against a backdrop of augmented environmental concern, advancing maritime regulation, and complexities of resource development in austere locations. Globally, commercial shipping looks warily at the prospects for more economical routes, while cruise-lines and adventurers seek what they imagine are the last locations of untouched natural splendor. And, at the same time, the north is regaining prominence in calculations of geostrategic advantage and competition/conflict. All this makes the conference subject more topical than ever.  Further details on the conference  agenda and speakers, as well as registration, is available at:

‍Feb. 8 - Vancouver Maritime Arbitrators Association Board Meeting @ 12:00

Feb. 14 - Quarterly Pilotage Operations Meeting @ 10:00

Feb. 29 - The Plimsoll Club Pub Night 

Mar. 6  COS Board of Directors Meeting @ 12:00

Mar. 14 - COS Annual General Meeting - Save the Date



‍Ship of the Week

February 02 - M/V Green Kemi

The MV Green Kemi, a multipurpose vessel operated by COSCO Shipping Specialized Carriers, has completed its first voyage to Finland, arriving at the port of Kemi, after which it is named. This vessel is noteworthy for being the world's largest pulp-carrying ship with an ice classification. It has a deadweight of 68,000 tons and is intended to serve the Nordic and Asian markets, primarily catering to major pulp customers.

The MV Green Kemi, one of five built by COSCO Shipping Specialized Carriers (CSSC), measures 226.8 meters in length, 32.26 meters in width, and has a draft of 19.3 meters. Its ice classification, as per the China Classification Society, is B1, equivalent to 1A under the Finnish-Swedish ice classification, indicating a strong hull and high engine power for navigating most ice conditions independently. The vessel's arrival marks the first time the port of Kemi has accommodated a ship of this size.

Designed to meet specific cargo requirements, the MV Green Kemi is equipped with four single cranes, facilitating the loading of pulp and other long, overweight equipment.


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