AIWA Highlights Investment Needs on the Nation’s Marine Highways

By Brad Pickel, Executive Director, Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association
Tuesday, February 09, 2016
Pickel

Nowhere is that more important than on the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway.

As 2016 begins, we at the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association (AIWA) are looking forward to participating in the ongoing dialogue regarding the need for strategic investments in the Nation’s Marine Transportation System. Our organization advocates for the ongoing maintenance of one of the nation’s longest water infrastructure projects, the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway (AIWW). Although the waterway has received funding for the past few years, we know that more is needed for this vital transportation route. The AIWW serves a number of commercial, governmental and recreational organizations over its’ collective 1,100 mile length. Whether it’s a small town fishing village or a large-scale corporation, the AIWW provides safe transportation to all users all along the eastern seaboard. Today, we see a number of opportunities and threats facing the AIWW.

Similar to many other federal projects, we face a lack of consistent and sustainable federal funding to maintain the waterway at its full capability. The AIWW has received incremental increases over the past few years and we are extremely thankful for the effort that has led to those extra dollars. But, we also see an opportunity to invest in the nation’s most efficient mode of transportation with lower emissions, lower costs, and a good environmental safety record. As the harbor deepening projects come to fruition and Post-Panamax ships steadily arrive, the nation must maximize all of the transportation avenues that are available.

Just this past November, we were fortunate to have U.S. D.O.T. Maritime Administrator Paul “Chip” Jaenichen participate in our annual meeting. Administrator Jaenichen painted a very clear picture regarding the expected increase in freight movement in the United States by 2040. With an expected increase of over 45% in freight movement, we were left to wonder if existing infrastructure of the multi-modal system could support the anticipated increases. Our view is that our nation has a greater opportunity to manage these increases by investing in the development and maintenance of a reliable national marine transportation system, and more specifically marine highways such as the AIWW (M-95).

Moving forward, federal dollars will continue to be constrained for infrastructure needs, and ongoing maintenance will likely require investments by non-federal partners. On the AIWW, non-federal partners have established dedicated funding sources in Florida and North Carolina to aid in keeping their sections of the waterway open. In 2015, Charleston County, South Carolina provided $500,000 to supplement federal funding for waterway maintenance within the county. We fully believe that it should remain a federal responsibility to maintain the nation’s marine transportation system, but there is a willingness to support limited non-federal funding if work can be scheduled and completed in a timely fashion.

In 2016, we are focused on pursuing additional funding for the maintenance of the AIWW, and the completion of Section 2008 of the 2014 Water Resources Reform & Development Act (WRRDA 2014). This section required the Corps to conduct an Assessment of Operations and Maintenance Needs for the AIWW and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. Upon completion of this study, everyone will have a roadmap showing the needs of each waterway and the necessary dollars to maintain them. Fortunately, the congressional delegation along the waterway supported this effort and now we hope that it will be included in the upcoming budget proposal. With this information, Congress will see the amount of money needed to maintain the waterway, and non-federal partners will see the amount of funding needed to maintain their section. Through these activities, we will continue to move forward in providing what all of the users of the waterway desire, a well-maintained marine highway 95.

Editor’s Note
Marad didn’t designate the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway (AIWW) as the “M-95” marine highway because it sounds nice. Running adjacent and parallel to Interstate Highway 95 for hundreds of miles, the AIWW has the potential to relieve a significant amount of pressure from one of the nation’s busiest and most congested freight and passenger car corridors. But, not if federal funding for maintenance dredging of the AIWW does not keep pace with the needs of the waterway. Beyond this, the practice of awarding dredging and maintenance funding on the basis of existing tonnage alone greatly under calls the huge potential of this waterway as a powerful intermodal marine highway. – JK.



(As published in the February 2016 edition of Marine News - http://magazines.marinelink.com/Magazines/MaritimeNews)

 

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter May 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Finance

VEB Guarantees $3 Bln of Yamal LNG Debt

Russian development bank VEB said on Friday it had provided a guarantee for $3 billion of debt to the Yamal liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, led by Russian gas firm Novatek.

US Oil Drillers Cut Rigs after 3 Weeks of Additions

U.S. oil drillers cut rigs this week for a 20th week this year after three weeks of additions, according to a closely followed report on Friday, as crude prices

World Stocks Tumble as Britain Votes for EU Exit

Global capital markets reeled on Friday after Britain voted to leave the European Union, with $2 trillion in value wiped from equity bourses worldwide, while money

News

HCI Capital Renamed Ernst Russ AG

A vote was passed at the ordinary shareholders’ meeting of HCI Capital AG yesterday to change the company’s name to Ernst Russ AG. The Executive Board and Supervisory

ABP orders Two Gottwald cranes

Terex Port Solutions (TPS) has received an order from Associated British Ports (ABP) for two electric Terex Gottwald Model 8 portal harbour cranes in the G HSK 8424 B four-rope grab variant.

Traffic Separation Schemes off Western Australia

On 1 December 2016 two new Traffic Separation Schemes (TSS) will come into effect off the south-west coast of Western Australia. Australia’s proposal to establish

Government Update

Traffic Separation Schemes off Western Australia

On 1 December 2016 two new Traffic Separation Schemes (TSS) will come into effect off the south-west coast of Western Australia. Australia’s proposal to establish

Austal Delivers LCS 8 to US Navy

Austal Limited (Austal) (ASX:ASB) delivered the future USS Montgomery (LCS 8) to the U.S. Navy, during a ceremony held aboard the ship at Austal USA’s shipyard in Mobile, Alabama, USA on 23 June.

Berthing Policy for Dry Bulk Cargo for Indian Ports Unveiled

Ministry of Shipping has formulated a new Berthing Policy for Dry Bulk Cargo for all Major Ports which will come into effect from 20th August, 2016. The objective

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Pipelines Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0980 sec (10 req/sec)