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Great Lakes Ships

Spending HMT Will End Dredging Crisis

Using the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund for its intended purpose will end the dredging crisis on the Great Lakes declared a stone shipper at a briefing for the Great Lakes delegation in Washington, DC on April 2 hosted by Great Lakes Maritime Task Force.  “We need approximately $200m to clear the dredging backlog on the Great Lakes,” said Thomas Buck, President and Chief Executive Officer of Carmeuse Lime & Stone.  “The fund collects $1.1b annually, but only spends $700m.  That leaves a surplus of nearly $5b. It’s time to put the ‘trust’ back in the Trust Fund.” Carmeuse Lime & Stone operates three large stone quarries that ship via the Great Lakes.  In 2008, those quarries loaded 14 million tons of aggregate and fluxstone into Great Lakes freighters.  Buck used a sampling of vessel loadings to illustrate the negative impacts of the dredging crisis on Carmeuse.  “In June, a vessel with a designed carrying capacity of 28,300 net tons left our plant in Calcite, Michigan, with only a little more than 24,000 tons in her holds.  The dredging crisis cost us nearly 15 percent of the vessel’s carrying capacity.” Another vessel left Carmeuse’s Cedarville, Michigan, quarry with more than 4,400 tons of carrying capacity unused. The reason vessels cannot carry full loads is decades of inadequate funding for dredging.  The U.S


Largest Potential Lakes Project in Generation

Congress is considering the possible funding of the construction of a new lock at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, a half-billion dollar undertaking that would rank as the largest navigation infrastructure project on the Great Lakes in a generation. Construction of a new lock at “the Soo” would bring up to 250 jobs annually to northern Michigan and continue for a decade.  Estimated cost of the lock is about $475m


Great Lakes Shipping Returns to Normal

Shipping on the Great Lakes should be back to normal by early Monday evening, Canadian marine authorities said, as a 730-ft. freighter, which crashed into a lift bridge across the Welland Canal, has been towed away. "They're raising the bridge at the moment and they will have to make sure it (is secure) before telling the ships to move into the canal," said Sylvie Moncion, a spokeswoman for the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp., which operates the key marine route into central North America


WRDA Passage to End Lakes Dredging Crisis

The end of the dredging crisis on the Great Lakes moved a giant step closer today when a key House committee approved legislation requiring the federal government to spend all the tax dollars it collects for dredging on dredging rather than use nearly half to balance the budget - at least on paper.  Section 2007 of H.R. 5892, the Water Resources Development Act of 2010, mandates that all tax revenues annually deposited in the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) be used to dredge the


Bi-national Study Highlights Green Advantages

GRT_Lakes_Stone Carrier web.jpg

A comprehensive report released today has defined the modal and environmental advantages of using marine shipping to transport goods in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway region. A study titled The Environmental and Social Impacts of Marine Transport in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway Region was conducted by Ontario transportation consultants Research and Traffic Group, and peer reviewed by independent experts in the U.S. and Canada


Great Lakes Shipping Industry Urges Fast WRRDA Approval

James H.I Weakley: Photo GLMTF

The Great Lakes shipping industry is calling on Congress to quickly pass the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) approved by the House/Senate conference committee. The bill contains provisions that will significantly reduce the dredging backlog on the Great Lakes by increasing the amount of tax dollars the government spends on maintaining deep-draft ports and waterways and designating the Great Lakes a “navigation system” for the purposes of maintenance dredging.


Halsey Appointed to Joint Management Committee for Thunder Bay

Dr. William Anderson, director of the Department of History, Arts and Libraries (HAL), today announced the appointment of State Archaeologist John R. Halsey to the Joint Management Committee administering the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and Preserve off the coast of Alpena. Halsey, who represents Michigan on the federal-state committee, will serve a two-year term expiring Jan. 1, 2005. The other member of the Joint Management Committee is Daniel J


Kvaerner Masa-Yards Receives Contract

Kvaerner Masa Marine (KMM) and Masa-Yards Arctic Technology Center (MARC), both part of the Kvaerner Masa-Yards Group, were recently awarded a contract to provide ice breaking consulting services and model testing for the USCG Great Lakes Icebreaker currently being designed by Marinette Marine Corporation (MMC) a division of Manitowoc Marine Group. The new icebreaker will be named Mackinaw in honor of the heavy icebreaker that it is replacing. The new Mackinaw will be a


Malfunction Underscores Need for Second Poe-Sized Lock

A malfunction of the Poe Lock at Sault Ste. Marie, , on September 24 has illustrated the pressing need for Congress to appropriate the funds to build another lock capable of handling the largest U.S.-Flag Great Lakes freighters. Although the vessel delays totaled only about three hours, had the problem been more severe, cargo movement on the Lakes would have slowed to a trickle. U.S.-Flag Lakers whose length and/or beam restrict them to the Poe Lock represent 70 percent of U.S


LCA Endorses Government Report

U.S.-flag shipping on the Great Lakes provides efficient, safe, and environmentally sound transportation services to industries that are the backbone of the American economy finds a report released on February 12 by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration.   The U.S.-flag Lakes fleet is “competitive with other modes of freight transportation in the movement of dry-bulk commodities and appears to be adequately capitalized to meet current market


Great Lakes Towing Announces Two New Hires

Mark W. Delventhal

The Great Lakes Towing Company has hired two new employees within its Great Lakes marine operations group. Lindsay R. Dew has been named Director of Operations & Compliance, and Mark W. Delventhal has been named Director of Technical Services & Business Development – both


Great Lakes: Less Ice Sees Ore Ships Thrive

Photo: Ben McClain

A relatively mild December on the Great Lakes allowed iron ore shipments to increase dramatically compared to a year ago when an early arriving winter blanketed the system with thick ice, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported.


Video: Coastguards Continue Great Lakes Icebreaking

Image: USCG

Continued icebreaking operations from the U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards open maritime lanes for commercial vessels The U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards are jointly continuing Operation Coal Shovel, the seasonal domestic icebreaking operations in the southern part of Lake Huron, Lake St


Great Lakes Coal Falls Short in 2014

Photo: LCA

Despite a nearly 1-million ton increase in coal shipments on the Great Lakes in December, the surge was not enough to enable the trade to outperform 2013, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) said, reporting that shipments for the year totaled 24


Great Lakes Water Levels Surge

The surge in water levels on Lake Superior and across the Great Lakes are a boon to this freighter travelling through the Soo Locks in June. (Photo: NOAA)

NOAA and partners document surge in Great Lakes water levels; levels expected to stay above-average through winter and spring of 2015   Scientists at the Army Corps of Engineers, Environment Canada and NOAA documented a record-setting surge in water levels on Lakes Superior and


Atlantic Rolling Gate Installed at Panama Canal

Photo: Panama Canal Authority

The Panama Canal Expansion Program’s electro-mechanical installation phase has begun with the installation of the first steel rolling gate at the Atlantic side.   "This year, the Expansion Program completed several milestones towards the completion of the project


Lakes Limestone 2014 Tonnage Dips

A typical Great Lakes stone carrier (source: Lake Carriers Association)

Shipments from U.S. ports dipped 4 percent, but loadings out of Canadian quarries rose 12.5 percent.   Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 27.1 million tons in 2014, a decrease of 1.8 percent from 2013 and a drop of 2.1 percent compared to the trade’s long-term average


Great Lakes Freeze Cost Economy $705m, 3,800 Jobs

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw, homeported in Cheboygan, Mich., conducts an escort on Lake Superior near Whitefish Point April 3, 2014. (USCG photo)

The seemingly glacial ice that brought shipping on the Great Lakes to a virtual standstill last winter cost the economy more than $700 million and nearly 4,000 jobs, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported, promting the group to to call for construction of a second heavy icebreaker to


US, Canadian Coast Guard Icebreaking Underway

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Neah Bay, homeported in Cleveland, works to keep the CSL Laurentien moving during an escort in eastern Lake Erie March 27, 2014. The crew experienced plate ice as thick as three feet and ice ridges as tall as eight feet. (U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of CSL Laurentien)

The U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards have begun collaborative icebreaking operations.   The U.S. and Canadian Coast Guards have commenced Operation Coal Shovel seasonal domestic ice breaking operations in the southern part of Lake Huron, Lake St. Clair, the St


RTC, OTC Begin Female Haircut Program

Chief Logistics Specialist Natali Philip, left, a recruit division commander, uses a ruler to measure the hair of Seaman Recruit Briana Cochems, from Los Angeles, to show proper hair grooming standards to new recruits at R

  In an effort to standardize training and education across the military services, Recruit Training Command (RTC) and Officer Training Command (OTC) will run a pilot program, which will no longer require female accessions to cut their hair.


Seaway Hits Post Recession Cargo Highs

file image: a modern FEDNAV bulker underways.

The Seaway concluded the 2014 navigation season with 40 million tonnes of cargo, which represents a full recovery from the 2009 global financial crisis and its ensuing aftermath.   The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation (SLSMC) announced today that the Seaway closed for the season


LCA Calls for New Icebreaker on the Great Lakes

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw, homeported in Cheboygan, Mich., conducts an escort on Lake Superior near Whitefish Point April 3, 2014. (USCG photo)

The ice that brought shipping on the Great Lakes to a virtual standstill last winter cost the economy more than $700 million and nearly 4,000 jobs and has prompted Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) to call for construction of a second heavy icebreaker to partner with the U.S


$7 Billion Makeover for Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Shipping

A typical bulker plies the St. Lawrence Seaway (image: Chambr of Marine commerce)

A new study released today reveals that $7 billion is being spent on asset renewal and infrastructure improvements in the bi-national Great Lakes-St. Lawrence shipping system.   The investment survey, compiled by maritime trade consultants, Martin Associates, tallies US$ 6


Great Lakes: US Cargoes Surge on Milder Weather

Photo courtesy: Lake Carriers Association

With the vast ice fields of December 2013 a distant but still troubling memory, U.S.-flag cargo movement on the Great Lakes this past December rebounded significantly.  Shipments totaled 9.6 million tons, an increase of nearly 35 percent compared to a year ago


Lakes Defend US Build Requirement of Jones Act

Jim Weakley (Photo courtesy of LCA)

An effort to remove the U.S.-build requirement from the Jones Act is being soundly rejected by Great Lakes Maritime Task Force, the largest labor/management coalition ever assembled to promote shipping on America’s Fourth Sea Coast. The Task Force said it sees no benefit to allowing






 
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