The National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service and the U.S. Coast Guard announce the availability of "A Prudent Mariner's Guide to Right Whale Protection" - an interactive, multi-media CD program that serves as a guide and voluntary training resource for commercial mariners operating in right whale habitats along the U.S. Atlantic coast. The CD, distributed free-of-charge upon request, provides a comprehensive collection of right whale information delivered in a compact and user-friendly format. The program includes: crew training information about right whales, recommended navigational actions when operating in right whale habitat, a guide to reporting sightings of dead or injured right whales, an informative video presentation, and a short follow-up quiz. It also provides guidelines for compliance with the Mandatory Ship Reporting Systems, including an innovative, interactive report generation program, as well as key supplementary information contained in a separate "Media" folder, such as video clips, information about the current Mandatory Ship Reporting areas, and diagrams of the recently implemented, recommended traffic lanes in right whale high-use areas. NOAA Fisheries, in collaboration with the Coast Guard and a number of other partners, developed the CD program and is currently targeting shipping companies and vessel operators who plan to ensure the CDs are delivered directly to vessels and included in bridge management training
Years of study and effort by NOAA and the U.S. Coast Guard will pay off this summer when two changes to shipping lanes into Boston are implemented. Both changes significantly reduce the risk of collisions between large ships and whales. Beginning on June 1, ships 300 gross tons and above will be asked to avoid an area in the Great South Channel from April through July, when right whales face the highest chance of being struck by ships
The U.S. Navy can go ahead with training exercises this month using sonar off the California coast but should afterward implement new guidelines to protect whales, a U.S. appeals court said, according to a Reuters report. For years, U.S. courts have weighed the rights of whales to live undisturbed versus U.S. national security needs. The order of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was the latest effort to strike the right balance.
The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting a port access routing study to analyze potential vessel routing measures and consider adjusting existing vessel routing measures in order to reduce vessel strikes on the highly endangered North Atlantic right whale. The areas under consideration include Cape Cod Bay and possibly Race Point and the Great South Channel in the northern region and approaches to Jacksonville, Fernandina Beach, and Brunswick in the southern region
1999-The Coast Guard "kept the peace" when the Makah Indian tribe hunted and killed a gray whale in Neah Bay, Washington. The Makah were guaranteed the right to hunt whales in their 1855 treaty with the U.S. (Source: USCG Historian’s)
A Training Module for all Mariners Professional mariners have a unique responsibility as they transit the world’s oceans. Mariners see a part of this earth that the vast majority of humanity will never witness and, in turn, they become stewards of the ocean by following the numerous regulatory measures aimed at reducing the impact of shipping on the environment. These regulations include, but certainly are not limited to, the use of AIS to avoid collisions and harmful oil spills
Greenpeace won its bid to delay oil exploration in the north Atlantic when a judge ruled the British government was failing to apply a European Commission environmental directive in allocating licenses. "The decision is a huge victory for whales, dolphins and coral reefs," Peter Melchett, the environmental group's executive director, told reporters after the ruling. The government is considering an appeal against the judgment that it is not taking into account the Commission's Habitats
Coast Guard District Eleven continues to support the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in conducting overflights to monitor the locations of blue whales in the Santa Barbara Channel and surrounding area. This information is being passed to vessel agents to increase industry awareness. Since September 8, 2007, two blue whale carcasses have been discovered in the Santa Barbara Channel, and one was discovered in Long Beach Harbor
After assessment of the fuel cell system of Elding I, the whale-watching ship receives this hydrogen auxiliary power unit in addition to the regular diesel engine. Germanischer Lloyd certifies the fuel cell system and its integration according to the GL "Guidelines for Fuel Cell-Systems on board of ships and boats" (VI-3-11) ensuring the technical safety of fuel cell application. Today, the Elding I was inaugurated with a first test trip.
Global Diving & Salvage, Inc. was contracted to remove the fin whale that had washed up on the Seahurst Park beach in Burien, WA. Global removed the carcass and prevented its further decomposition in the city park. On April 13, several reports were made to the U.S. Coast Guard that a whale had washed up approximately five miles south of Seattle’s Alki Point. The fin whale, not local to thearea, was believed to have been struck by a container ship at sea and brought into the Puget
Seafarers’ suggestions on how to improve their situation when facing criminal charges were presented at the landmark 100th session of the Legal Committee of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) which met in London from April 15-19, 2013.
Personnel from U.S. Fleet Forces (USFF) command highlighted the Navy's environmental efforts during Earth Day 2013 events held in the Hampton Roads, Va. area April 20-21. Earth Day is observed April 22 each year, and the Navy's theme for 2013 was "Global Reach - Local Action."
Star Bulk Carriers Corp. announced that its Board of Directors approved a backstopped equity rights offering, which will allow the company to raise equity capital through the sale of its commonshares. The proceeds are expected to be primarily used for orders for fuel-efficient dry bulk vessels
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has approved "Cruise Industry Passenger Bill of Rights" detailing members' commitment to the safety, comfort & care of guests in a number of important areas. The CEOs of CLIA North American member cruise lines are each immediately
A new European Union regulation gives passengers travelling by water improved rights to assistance in cases of cancelled or delayed departures. Passengers travelling by water are set to enjoy improved rights to assistance in cases of cancelled or delayed departures as a new EU regulation on
In the years that I have been authoring this column, I have seen and commented on numerous developments of interest. None have been as unexpected, though, as the below document which inadvertently came to my attention. Rumors have swirled recently of unrest in the Arctic
Europeans better protected legally when travelling by water from now onwards. As from 31 December 2012, passengers travelling by sea will have the right to claim compensation for loss or damage in the event of accidents. Passengers travelling by sea and inland waterways in the EU
Free-to-attend workshops to assist with transition to ECDIS The UK Hydrographic Office has unveiled the first dates of 2013 for its renowned Digital Integration Workshops, the first of which will take place in Limassol, Cyprus on 31 January.
The Minister of Labour & Productivity, begins the process of ratifying the International Labour Organisation’s Maritime Labour Convention 2006 (MLC2006). During the session, the Minister, Emeka Wogu commented that the step is another milestone aimed at generating and sustaining
Several passengers in the bow pulpit of a 106-ft whale-watching vessel were injured when a large wave was struck & threw them backwards. Injuries ranged from cuts and bruises to a broken patella (knee) and jaw. Although there were many other passengers on board at the time
NOAA is seeking comments on a supplemental draft environmental impact statement (EIS) for oil and gas activities in the Arctic Ocean. The draft, developed in collaboration with the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM)
President Ma Ying-jeou vows to safeguard the nation's sovereignty & fishing rights as he presided over the commissioning of 2 new Coast Guard Administration ships. The commissioning ceremony of the two ships, a 2,000-ton frigate and a 1,000-ton patrol boat
The ITF (International Transport Workers' Federation) spoke out against a temporary injunction that throws out striking dockers from Kwai Tsing Container Terminals, Port of Hong Kong. On January 30, the ITF Hong Kong Dockers Coordinating Committee comprised of Hong Kong Storehouses
The High Court in Hong Kong has ruled in favour of extending the temporary injunction, but acknowledges the workers' right to strike. According to the ITF, the injunction against the Union of Hong Kong Dockers (HKDU) aims to halt action at the Kwai Tsing Container Terminal in the Port of Hong Kong
Aveva announced that CSC Jinling Shipyard in Greater China has signed a new contract for Aveva Net software, upon which an integrated design information management system will be deployed. CSC Jinling Shipyard has grown over recent years, extending its operations across multiple sites