US Coast Guard Moves Forward on New Icebreakers

Posted by Eric Haun
Thursday, January 21, 2016
USCG photo by Rob Rothway

The U.S. Coast Guard released a proposed acquisition timeline and requirements for two new heavy U.S. icebreakers that could cost $1 billion each and said it would meet with interested companies during an industry day in March.

 
Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Paul Zukunft told an event hosted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies that notice was intended to get information from companies about their ability to build and develop icebreakers that would be in use for 40 years and to explore options such as leasing.
 
In a federal notice, the Coast Guard spelled out key notional requirements for the new ships, including the ability to break through ice with a thickness of at least 6 feet at a continuous speed of three knots, and the ability to break a single-pass channel through ice to a width of at least 83 feet.
 
It said the ships would also have to operate for at least 80 days without replenishment of food or fuel, and have a minimum range of 21,500 nautical miles at 12 kts in ice free waters.
 
The Coast Guard said it had not finalized an acquisition strategy, but it hoped to release a draft request for proposals in the first quarter of fiscal 2017, and award a contract in the last quarter of fiscal 2018 or fiscal 2019.
 
Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc, which built the newest U.S. icebreaker and delivered it in 1999, said it was "absolutely interested" in building icebreakers for the U.S. Coast Guard.
 
General Dynamics Corp, the other large U.S. military shipbuilder, has also expressed interest in the program, as have other shipyards, according to the Coast Guard.
 
President Barack Obama in September called for the United States to accelerate plans to buy at least one new heavy icebreaker for the U.S. Arctic by 2020, instead of the previous goal of 2022. Each ship is likely to cost around $1 billion.
 
Melting sea ice in the region has increased traffic and could open the Arctic to more shipping, mining and oil drilling, increasing the potential for ships to be stuck in ice that still covers the region for much of the year.
 
Zukunft said the United States also needs icebreakers to resupply national security infrastructure in Antarctica.
 
He gave no details about funding for icebreakers, and said the Coast Guard's fiscal 2017 budget request was still being finalized with the White House Office of Management and Budget.
 
Zukunft said companies could look at licensing existing designs built in other countries to speed up the process.
 
Senator Lisa Murkowski, an Alaska Republican, said she was optimistic that 2017 budget request, due to be released on Feb. 9, would include initial funding for icebreakers.
 
The United States has only two operational icebreakers, plus another heavy icebreaker that is not in commission. Russia has 42 icebreakers with another 12 ships planned or under construction, and China has two, Zukunft said.
 
The Coast Guard has warned that as the Arctic opens to tourism and oil drilling, the United States risks not having enough capacity to carry out search and rescue and oil spill response missions.
 
Zukunft said a recent study concluded that the Coast Guard needed three heavy and three medium-sized icebreakers, but the current floor was at least two heavy icebreakers so one vessel could free the other if it became trapped in ice. It would also be too costly to buy and build just one icebreaker, he said.
 
 
(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe, Meredith Mazzilli and Diane Craft)

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

Technology

P&I Club warns on Enclosed Space Entry & Testing

The London P&I Club says it continues to see cases of injuries and fatalities associated with entry into enclosed onboard spaces, including cargo holds on bulk

OOCL Renews VOD Training Contract

Videotel, producer and distributor of training videos, 3D animation, and e-Learning courses to the maritime market and part of KVH Industries, Inc., (Nasdaq: KVHI),

Tech & Design Solutions for Modern Workboats

EPA Tier 4 regulations (for engines of 804 hp and higher) and propulsion advancements have many manufacturers and vessel designers changing course to adapt to new requirements and customer demands.

Shipbuilding

NASSCO Lays Keel for Jones Act Tanker Liberty

U.S. shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO hosted a keel laying ceremony on Thursday, May 26 for the Liberty, one of three new ECO Class Jones Act tankers under a

SAFE Boats Delivers First CIV for Air and Marine Operations

SAFE Boats International (SBI), a manufacturer of aluminum boats located in Bremerton, Wash., has completed the first Coastal Interceptor Vessel (CIV) on contract from U.

Defense Appropriations Bill Includes $1 Bln for US Icebreaker

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee’s FY2017 Defense Appropriations Bill has included $1 billion in funding to accelerate construction of a new polar icebreaker for the U.

Finance

Defense Appropriations Bill Includes $1 Bln for US Icebreaker

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee’s FY2017 Defense Appropriations Bill has included $1 billion in funding to accelerate construction of a new polar icebreaker for the U.

Higher Capesize Demand Pushes up Baltic Index

The Baltic Exchange's main sea freight index, tracking rates for ships carrying dry bulk commodities, rose on Friday buoyed by higher demand for capesize vessels.

TT Club Reports Robust Financial Results for 2015

TT Club has announced its financial results for the year ended December 31, 2015, and AM Best affirms its A- (Excellent) rating for the 10th consecutive year.   Knud Pontoppidan,

News

GloMEEP Project Forges Ahead with Train-the-Trainer Workshop

A global Train-the-Trainer workshop on energy efficiency has been delivered in China (23-27 May), preparing the personnel needed to cascade knowledge on energy

Diana Charters Out Two Bulkers

Diana Shipping Inc. today announced that, through a separate wholly-owned subsidiary, it entered into a time charter contract with Bunge S.A., Geneva, for one of its Panamax dry bulk vessels,

Long Beach Port Maintains Strong Bond Rating

Fitch Ratings, one of the top three U.S. credit analysis agencies, has affirmed the Port of Long Beach’s “AA” rating on its outstanding debt. Fitch stated the AA rating — its highest for U.

Coast Guard

Details El Faro's Sinking Emerge from US Probe

U.S. investigators on Friday concluded two weeks of hearings into the sinking of cargo ship El Faro in a hurricane last fall that included reports the vessel had

Defense Appropriations Bill Includes $1 Bln for US Icebreaker

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee’s FY2017 Defense Appropriations Bill has included $1 billion in funding to accelerate construction of a new polar icebreaker for the U.

SCA Applauds Funding for New US Ships

The Senate Appropriations Committee this week acknowledged calls for increasing the Navy’s ship count, funding the construction of 10 new ships, as well as providing the U.

Vessels

Hansa Offenburg, Hansa Drakenburg Sail Scale-free

Leonhardt & Blumberg was founded in 1903 and has managed more than 180 vessels, the majority of which were general cargo vessels and bulk carriers. Today the company

NASSCO Lays Keel for Jones Act Tanker Liberty

U.S. shipbuilder General Dynamics NASSCO hosted a keel laying ceremony on Thursday, May 26 for the Liberty, one of three new ECO Class Jones Act tankers under a

SAFE Boats Delivers First CIV for Air and Marine Operations

SAFE Boats International (SBI), a manufacturer of aluminum boats located in Bremerton, Wash., has completed the first Coastal Interceptor Vessel (CIV) on contract from U.

Government Update

Details El Faro's Sinking Emerge from US Probe

U.S. investigators on Friday concluded two weeks of hearings into the sinking of cargo ship El Faro in a hurricane last fall that included reports the vessel had

Defense Appropriations Bill Includes $1 Bln for US Icebreaker

The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee’s FY2017 Defense Appropriations Bill has included $1 billion in funding to accelerate construction of a new polar icebreaker for the U.

DSC Dredge Receives President’s E-Star Award

DSC Dredge, LLC, based in Reserve, La., has received the 2016 President’s “E-Star” Award for exports.   In a ceremony held on May 16, 2016, at the U.S. Department

 
 
Maritime Standards Pipelines Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
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: 0.1290 sec (8 req/sec)