The articles excerpted on this site report on the state of the industry as seen by mainstream media, and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the officers of the ILWU Coast Longshore Division.

Source: Trump drops plans for food aid shipping that would support American jobs

Excerpts from Reuters:

President Donald Trump’s administration has dropped plans for an executive order that will require all U.S. food aid to be transported on American ships after members of Congress protested, congressional and aid sources said on Friday.

Reuters reported on Thursday that Trump was considering issuing an order that would have increased to 100 percent the current requirement that 50 percent of such aid be transported on U.S.-flagged vessels.

Senator Bob Corker, the Republican chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said he had discussed the issue with Trump and that he understands that the shift would have increased the cost of food aid and caused more people to starve.

Supporters say Trump’s initiative would not only create new U.S. jobs in the shipping industry but that U.S.-controlled food shipments are important for national security because the U.S. fleet could be transferred to the military in case of a conflict.

More at Reuters


Maritime Museum video ‘honors Dickie Parker, John Knudsen, all longshoremen who have lost their lives’

‘Maritime Minute: History of the ILWU’ was created by the Los Angeles Maritime Museum and posted by the Port of Los Angeles on July 5, 2017:

Decades after the 1934 West Coast Waterfront strike, longshore workers are still an integral part of the Port of Los Angeles today as they were then. Marifrances Trivelli, Director of the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, discusses how “Bloody Thursday” and the events that followed led to the formation of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU). In this special edition of Maritime Minute, we honor Dickie Parker, John Knudsen, and all of the longshoremen who have lost their lives working on the docks.


After port closures, Lowenthal, Poe call on DHS to give information on cybersecurity

From Congressman Alan Lowenthal’s office:

Following the closure of several US container terminals due to a recent cyberattack, Congressmen Alan Lowenthal (CA-47) and Ted Poe (TX-02) have called on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide a classified briefing to Congressional Members representing ports throughout the nation.

In the letter to DHS Secretary John Kelly, the Congressmen – both co-chairs of the PORTS Caucus – point out that the nation’s ports are critical components within the national freight network, accounting for over $4.5 trillion a year in economic activity. The Congressmen requested the briefing to help Congress better understand the scope of existing cybersecurity information sharing programs between DHS and critical infrastructure operators, such as port terminal operators.

“Our nation’s ports are the gateways to our national economy. We cannot leave them vulnerable to these cyberattacks

“We have to make sure that we use every tool at our disposal to prevent attacks at the heart of our economic infrastructure,” Lowenthal said. “Our federal security agencies have some of the best cybersecurity experts in the world, and these agencies should leverage that expertise to help prevent attacks on critical infrastructure like our ports.”

Read the full release at the Signal Tribune


Appeals court clears Viterra in 2011 death of grain-terminal worker

From CBC/Radio-Canada:

Saskatchewan’s highest court has dismissed an appeal against a Regina-based agribusiness accused of negligence in the death of a worker in 2011.

Federal Crown prosecutors had charged Viterra — which has since been purchased by Glencore — with six violations of the Canada Labour Code.

On Sept. 8, 2011, a man working at a Viterra-owned grain terminal in Rosetown, Sask., was fatally smothered by grain inside a receiving pit beneath the terminal floor.

“Grain had accumulated in the pit and when the deceased stepped onto the grain he was immediately engulfed and suffocated,” Whitmore wrote.

Read the rest at CBC/Radio-Canada


Longview’s Millennium Bulk Terminals permitting update

Dry Bulk Magazine

Back in February 2012, Millennium Bulk Terminals (MBT) submitted its Shorelines permit application for the coal export terminal. The Shorelines permits are needed for the building of the docks and dredging of the berth pocket. After 10 public meetings across the state, MBT is moving into the final stretch of the permitting.

Over twenty local, state and federal permits will be needed. The Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) are the documents that inform regulatory agencies of the details of the company’s project and they will use those studies when issuing permits. Following the publication of the Final EIS from the county and the state, Millennium filed the Critical Areas Permit application to Cowlitz County on 22 May 2017. The County is reviewing and processing the application.

The Department of Ecology (ECY) is issuing a public notice regarding MBT-Longview’s request for a Clean Water Act section 401 water quality certification for the proposed Coal Export Terminal. At the agency’s request, MBT has withdrawn and resubmitted our permit application simultaneously using the agency’s form for this purpose.

Read more at Dry Bulk Magazine


Shipping hears about plight of abandoned seafarers in Aberdeen

From Hellenic Shipping News:

Members of the maritime community, including International Maritime Organization (IMO) Secretary General Kitack Lim, heard first-hand about the plight of a group of abandoned seafarers in Aberdeen, Scotland, and how seafarers’ charity Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) is supporting them.

The Indian crew from the Malaviya Seven offshore supply ship were last paid in July 2016 and are owed more than $650,000 in unpaid wages. The vessel was detained after routine checks revealed the seafarers had not been paid.

“The seafarers’ predicament not only affects them, it also affects their families back home who have food, living accommodation and other costs to pay,” AoS Aberdeen port chaplain Doug Duncan told a gathering at AoS’ reception on board the HQS Wellington in London on June 28th.

The event was held to coincide with Seafarers UK’s annual Seafarers Awareness Week and IMO’s Day of the Seafarer.

Continue reading here


Harbor Maintenance Tax legislation introduced in Congress

From the American Association of Port Authorities:

Yesterday, bipartisan, bicameral legislation was introduced to ensure that all Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT) money collected is returned to ports for the maintenance of federal navigation channels and supporting maritime infrastructure.

The Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Reform Act of 2017 was introduced in both the House and Senate. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) introduced S. 1488 in the Senate. The House bill, H.R. 3152, was introduced by Representatives Dave Reichert (R-WA) and Nanette Barragán (D-CA).

The Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Reform Act of 2017 would

  • Establish full use of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) each year with interest by creating a direct spending mechanism for the HMTF;
  • Ensure HMTF funds collected are allocated fully and more equitably by establishing a set-aside for donor ports;
  • Address the issue of cargo diversion by increasing investments to donor ports to provide rebates to shippers transporting cargo through their ports or for port infrastructure needs;
  • Support operation and maintenance at small ports and harbors by updating the baseline for the set-aside for small ports; and
  • Better meet the nation’s harbor and waterway needs.

The HMT generates about $1.6 billion annually, which is considered sufficient to fully fund harbor maintenance needs. Only about half the annual HMT revenue was being used for its intended purpose five years ago. The Water Resources Reform and Development Act established funding targets that, if followed, would lead to full HMT revenue use over a ten-year period. This legislation would make full revenues immediately available.


Global shipping giant Maersk is reeling from ransomware fallout

From Reuters:

Global shipping is still feeling the effects of a cyber attack that hit A.P. Moller-Maersk [three] days ago, showing the scale of the damage a computer virus can unleash on the technology dependent and inter-connected industry.

The cyber attack was among the biggest-ever disruptions to hit global shipping. Several port terminals run by a Maersk division, including in the United States, India, Spain, the Netherlands, were still struggling to revert to normal operations on Thursday after experiencing massive disruptions.

The impact of the attack on the company has reverberated across the industry given its position as the world’s biggest container shipping line and also operator of 76 ports via its APM Terminals division.

In an example of the turmoil that ensued, the unloading of vessels at the group’s Tacoma terminal was severely slowed on Tuesday and
Wednesday, said Dean McGrath, president of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 23 there.

“They went back to basics and did everything on paper,” McGrath said.

Read the rest here


Northwest Seaport Alliance keeps up strong showing in May

From the Seattle Times:

Import traffic at the Northwest Seaport Alliance, the pairing of the waterborne units of the Port of Seattle and Port of Tacoma, rose a strong 10 percent last month, defying a troubling slowdown at some other West Coast gateways.

Full imports totaled 115,960 TEUs, or twenty-foot equivalents, the standard measure for cargo containers. Including outbound empty containers, the alliance set a record for international traffic, which increased 18 percent to 255,817 TEUs. Full exports rose 8 percent in May.

The jump has added significance because the megaports of Los Angeles and Long Beach reported tepid growth in May, leading some industry experts to say the “Panama Canal effect” was kicking in. Virginia and Georgia port authorities saw robust traffic increases. The Panama Canal, widened a year ago, now allows large container ships to bypass the West Coast and sail to U.S. East and Gulf coast ports.

More at the Seattle Times


Spanish stevedores reach an agreement with the employers

Note: Translated from a Reuters Madrid article. Read the original in Spanish at this link.

Spanish dockers and port managers on Thursday reached an agreement whereby companies pledged to guarantee full employment in the sector after the liberalization process, and workers withdrew calls for strikes, according to the two parties in a joint statement.

“The National Association of Stevedoring and Ship Consignment Companies (Anesco) assumes the guarantee of the continuity of employment of 100 percent of the stevedores, and the unions ratify the commitments acquired on March 29,” reads the statement. (Continue)

Estibadores españoles llegan a un acuerdo con la patronal

Los estibadores españoles y la patronal portuaria alcanzaron este jueves un acuerdo por el que las empresas se comprometen a garantizar la totalidad del empleo del sector tras el proceso de liberalización y los trabajadores retiran las convocatorias de huelga, según informaron las dos partes en un comunicado conjunto.

“La Asociación Nacional de Empresas Estibadoras y Consignatarias de Buques (Anesco) asume la garantía de la continuidad del empleo del 100 por cien de los trabajadores de la estiba y los sindicatos ratifican los compromisos adquiridos el 29 de marzo”, reza el comunicado. (Leer mas)


Overseas cyberattack hits Western Washington

From Q13:

A European cyberattack had ripples all the way to Western Washington on Tuesday as systems at two prominent international companies crashed and failed.

APM Terminals in the Port of Tacoma had limited operations because its parent company, shipping titan Maersk, was corrupted.

“A cyberattack on one is a cyberattack on all,” said UW-Bothell professor Barbara Endicott-Popovsky.

More at Q13


Global cyberattack shuts down Port of LA’s largest terminal

From CBS Los Angeles:

A ransomware attack that was reported across Europe and around the world shut down the Port of Los Angeles’ largest terminal Tuesday.

Operations were halted at the APM Terminal, owned by Danish shipping company A.P. Moller-Maersk, at about 6 a.m.

Maersk issued a statement confirming that it was “hit as part of a global cyber attack named Petya, affecting multiple sites and select business units. We are responding to the situation to contain and limit the impact and uphold operations.’”

Read the full article at CBS Los Angeles


Oakland vies to become global supply chain hub

From Supply Chain Management Review:

More news surfaced recently confirming that the Port of Oakland is consolidating its position as a leading ocean cargo gateway in the U.S.

Maritime Director John Driscoll said last week that the port envisions more than $600 million worth of infrastructure investment. It’s coming from private developers, government grants and port funds, he added.

Projects ranging from marine terminal improvements to new distribution centers are either on the drawing board or under construction,
Driscoll said. They’re expected to strengthen Oakland’s position as a magnet for containerized imports and exports. “These are game-changers,” Driscoll said. “They will give us first-class logistics capabilities.”

More at Supply Chain Management Review


Maersk says global IT breakdown caused by cyber attack

From Reuters:

Shipping giant A.P. Moller-Maersk, which handles one out of seven containers shipped globally, said a cyber attack had caused outages at its computer systems across the world on Tuesday.

The attack came as computer servers across Europe and in India were hit by a major ransomware attack.

The breakdown affected all business units at Maersk, including container shipping, port and tug boat operations, oil and gas production, drilling services, and oil tankers, the company said.

Maersk’s port operator APM Terminals was also hit, with Dutch broadcaster RTV Rijnmond reporting that 17 shipping container terminals run by APM Terminals had been hacked, including two in
Rotterdam and 15 in other parts of the world.

More at Reuters


Transit 1,535 marks first year of Panama Canal expansion

From Prensa Latina:

The transit 1,535 of a neopanamax marks today the first year of operation of the interoceanic way expansion, which exceded expectations of the shipping market, according to the Panama Canal Authority (PCA).

Through the canal navigated 5.9 neopanamax per day as average, double the estimates of the PCA for the first stage that concludes today and also, the cruising of container ships with 13 thousand TEU’s (six-meter containers) that will transit daily.

Among them, those of biggest size transiting the Canal, was the Chinese OOCL (Orient Overseas Container Line) France with a top capacity of 13 thousand 926 TEU’s and dimensions of 366.47 meters long and 48.23 wide; besides, its toll was one million 83 thousand dollars, record to date in the water route.

More at Prensa Latina