The Congress worked hard and most importantly together at the end of the recently-concluded First Session in December to finalize and pass Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 appropriations that included the Energy & Water Development (E&WD) Appropriations bill that funds the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps) work on the nations’ waterways.By law, 60 days after the President signs the E&WD appropriations bill, the Corps must release a Work Plan that shows specific allocations for funding projects.
Robust Dredging on America’s Inland Waterways
Inland Dredging Company helps keep commerce flowing on America’s inland waterway system.Dyersburg, Tenn. based Inland Dredging Company completed dredging projects spanning eight states and across four U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Districts. Beginning in July and finishing in December (2019), Inland Dredging crews dredged ports and harbors along the Mighty Mississippi River, Ouachita River, Red River, Black Warrior River, Atchafalaya River, Tennessee–Tombigbee Waterway, and the Gulf Intercoastal Waterway from Apalachicola to Morgan City.Richard Jackson…
WCI Applauds Corps’ FY20 Work Plan
Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) offered praise for Congress, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ for the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) work plan that lays out allocations for funds provided in the FY20 Energy & Water Development Appropriations bill toward the Corps’ civil works mission. The work plan was released late yesterday.Critical to the nation’s agricultural shippers and American family farmers, the Navigation and Ecosystem Sustainability Program (NESP) (Upper Mississippi River – Illinois Waterway System: IL…
Trump's FY21 Budget Request 'Inadequate' -WCI
President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21) budget request released on Monday is "astonishingly inadequate" says industry advocate Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI).The FY21 budget provides $0 for construction of ongoing priority navigation projects cost-shared through the Inland Waterways Trust Fund (IWTF); cuts funding for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works Mission by 22% ($5.967 billion, a $1.7 billion decrease from the FY20 enacted level); and proposes $1.8 million in new user fees on commercial waterways operators.Last fiscal year (FY20)…
US Gulf Production Restarting After Barry
U.S. oil companies on Monday began restoring some of the more than nearly 74% production shut at U.S. Gulf of Mexico platforms ahead of Hurricane Barry, the U.S. offshore drilling regulator said.There was 1.3 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil production off line in the U.S.-regulated areas of the Gulf of Mexico on Monday, about 80,000 barrels less than on Sunday, according to the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE).Workers also were returning to the more than 280 production platforms that had been evacuated.
Barges Break Free, Hit Oklahoma Dam, Sink
According to a report on WeatherChannel.com, a pair of barges broke free and hit Lock and Dam 16 on the flooded Arkansas River on Thursday, May 23, 2019, north of Webber Falls, Oklahoma.Early reports citing the Oklahoma Highway Patrol said there did not appear to be any damage to the lock.The barges broke loose from the Port of Muskogee and passed under the Highway 62 bridge without hitting anything, KOTV reported. (Sources: WeatherChannel.com, Oklahoma Higway Patrol & KOTV)
Port Authority: 'A strong start to 2019'
Tonnage on river increases 60 percent from 2018Through the first two months of 2019, the Port of Little Rock and its stevedorer, LSI, have seen a year-to-year increase of 33 barges, a 62% increase in activity. Additionally, tonnage is up 49,000 tons year-to-year (60%) with a total of 130,400 tons. Commodities handled during the month included aluminum ingots and tee bars, bauxite, nepheline syenite, rock and sand, scrap, steel coils, wetcake and wire rod coils. LSI expects barge activity to continue to be very strong over the next several months.Activity on the docks remained strong for February with a total of 47 barges worked- 21 more than February 2018. The 72,000 tons of cargo loaded and unloaded from barges during the month surpassed February 2018 by 80 percent.
President's Request Cuts Funding for USACE
Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) reacted to the Trump Administration’s release of an outline of its top-line FY20 budget numbers yesterday. Today, the Corps of Engineers released its account and project-specific funding levels. For the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works program, the FY20 budget proposes $4.827 billion, a 31% cut from the FY19 appropriated amount of $7.0 billion. Inland Waterways Trust Fund (IWTF) proposed funding in FY20 is $55.5 million, with a total of $111 million requested for the Lower Mon Project (Monongahela River, Pittsburgh), funding it to completion.
Waterways Council Reacts to Budget Numbers
Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) reacted to the Trump Administration’s release of an outline of its top-line FY20 budget numbers yesterday. Today, the Corps of Engineers released its account and project-specific funding levels.For the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works program, the FY20 budget proposes $4.827 billion, a 31% cut from the FY19 appropriated amount of $7.0 billion.Inland Waterways Trust Fund (IWTF) proposed funding in FY20 is $55.5 million, with a total of $111 million requested for the Lower Mon Project (Monongahela River, Pittsburgh), funding it to completion.
Sunoco to Buy American Midstream Terminals
Pipeline transportation of natural gas company American Midstream Partners (AMID) has entered into a definitive agreement for the sale of its refined products terminalling business (Refined Products Terminals) to Sunoco, for approximately $125m.The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018, a release said.The divestiture of the Refined Products Terminals, located in Caddo Mills, Texas and North Little Rock, Arkansas, represents continued progress towards American…
Tug Catches Fire on the Mississippi River
A section of the lower Mississippi River has been closed to vessel traffic after a tug caught fire near mile marker 673 on Wednesday. All crew is reported safe, and there have been no reports of pollution.The U.S. Coast Guard said it is responding to a fire on board the uninspected towing vessel Jacob Kyle Rusthoven near West Helena, Ark. after being notified of the incident at 10:30 a.m.The stricken vessel has been pushed to the Arkansas bank of the river where firefighting efforts continue.
Families of 'Duck Boat' Sinking Victims Sue Tour Operator
The families of four of the 17 people killed when a World War Two-style tourist "duck boat" sank on a Missouri lake during a storm this month have sued the tour operator, saying it recklessly allowed the vessel out in dangerous weather.On Sunday, relatives of Ervin Coleman, 76, and 2-year-old Maxwell Ly, his great-nephew, both of Indianapolis, sued tour operator Ripley Entertainment Inc, which operates under the name Ride the Ducks, and vessel manufacturer Amphibious Vehicle Manufacturing LLC…
Update: 17 Dead after Missouri Tourist Boat Sinks in Storm
Divers on Friday pulled the last four bodies from the wreckage of a "duck boat" that sank in a storm in a Missouri lake, killing 17 people in one of the deadliest U.S. tourist incidents in recent years.The World War Two-style amphibious vehicle was filled with 31 passengers including children when a microburst storm hit Table Rock Lake outside the tourist city of Branson, Missouri, on Thursday. A video of the incident showed it battered by waves.Wendy Doucey, an office manager at the Stone County sheriff's office, said that divers had recovered the four bodies from the sunken duck boat. The vehicle was 80 feet (24 m) under water."It's important that we find out for sure what events did occur," Governor Michael Parson said at a Friday morning news conference.
EPA Announces Funding to Reduce Diesel Emissions
Preference given to fleets in areas facing air quality challenges. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the availability of grant funding to modernize the nation’s diesel fleet by retrofitting or replacing vehicles with cleaner, more efficient diesel engines. EPA anticipates awarding approximately $40 million in Diesel Emission Reduction Program (DERA) grant funding to eligible applicants, subject to the availability of funds. “These grants will incentivize improvements to aging diesel fleets and improve air quality throughout the country…
US Navy to Commission LCS Little Rock
The U.S. Navy will commission its newest Freedom-variant littoral combat ship (LCS), the future USS Little Rock (LCS 9), during a December 16 ceremony at the Canalside waterfront in Buffalo, N.Y. The future USS Little Rock is the 10th littoral combat ship to enter the fleet and the fifth of the Freedom-variant design. It is the second warship named for the Arkansas state capital and will be commissioned alongside the first USS Little Rock (CL 92), which serves as a museum at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park.
Harvey Impacts Domestic Fuel Network
U.S. drivers are starting to feel the effects of Tropical Storm Harvey in their wallets as the country's fuel distribution network starting at the Gulf Coast and stretching across the country is squeezed by floods, refinery closures and dwindling supplies. At least 3.6 million barrels per day (bpd) of refining capacity is offline and more refineries are at risk of shut downs as the storm relentlessly dumps rain on Texas and heads toward Louisiana. The longer refineries remain shut, the more retail prices will increase, traders and analysts said.
Cindy to Weaken this Morning - NHC
Tropical storm Cindy is expected to weaken while moving farther inland and become a tropical depression later Thursday morning, the U.S. National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in its latest advisory. "Continued weakening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and Cindy should weaken to a tropical depression later this morning, and become a remnant low tonight," the Miami-based weather forecaster said. Cindy, now located about 40 miles (65 km) northwest of Lake Charles, Louisiana with maximum sustained winds of 40 miles per hour (65 km/h), will likely move into southeastern Arkansas early Friday, and into Tennessee later that day. Reporting by Vijaykumar Vedala and Apeksha Nair
US Navy: Bigger is Better, but at What Cost?
The U.S. Navy has a balanced fleet, but it wants to grow bigger and better. Will the budget allow both? Maritime Reporter's March 2017 cover story on the U.S. Navy was all about the numbers. There exists several plans to grow the fleet beyond the current number of 308 ships, the Mitre recommendation of 414 ships, the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment 340-ship proposal, and the Navy’s decision to grow the fleet to 355 ships, and the Trump administration’s 350. With so many numbers being bandied about, there are even more suggestions on how to get there.
Op/Ed: Trump's Infrastructure Plan Should Include Inland Waterways
Bryan Day, executive director of the Little Rock Port Authority, weighs in on President Donald Trump’s proposed infrastructure plan, calling for U.S. policymakers to consider inland waterways and ports in America’s infrastructure plan. President Donald Trump and members of Congress continue to discuss plans for a major infrastructure spending plan for our country. With calls from leaders from across the country, members of the federal government are coming together to embrace the importance of maintaining America’s infrastructure.
APM Terminals Boosts Walmart Hub at Port of Mobile
APM Terminals Mobile welcomes Arkansas-based global retail giant Walmart’s plans for a new International Distribution Center to be opened 15 miles from the port. The sixth of Walmart’s US international distribution centers, the Irvington, Alabama facility will handle Walmart’s import cargoes destined for Walmart’s Regional Distribution Centers in the American South. The recently completed Panama Canal lock widening project will permit vessels of up to 13,000 TEU capacity to transit the canal…
Tug Huron Goes to Work in Duluth
The Great Lakes Towing Company said it has repositioned its Tug Huron to Duluth, Minn. on Monday, January 2, 2017 to enhance capabilities for icebreaking, harbor assist and other services essential to commercial shipping in the Duluth-Superior region. The Tug Huron’s first icebreaking operation of 2017 took place late Wednesday evening, January 4 when she assisted longstanding customer, Canada Steamship Lines M/V Thunder Bay in the Port of Duluth. In addition to Huron, the Towing Company’s harbor fleet in Duluth now includes to Tugs Arkansas…
BRP’s Evinrude Welcomes New Dealers, OEMs
BRP continues its North American expansion of the Evinrude sales network by signing 16 new dealers and four premium OEM boat builders to its portfolio – a clear indication of the excitement surrounding its Evinrude brand and the continued momentum of its industry-leading engines. These four OEMs are Calypso Skiff, Chaparral Boats, Polar Kraft Boats and Mowdy Boats of Texas. division. “We introduced our new E-TEC G2 150 HP to 200 HP offering in June, which has garnered significant attention.
Little Rock Port Gets $6M for New Dock, Improvements
Congressman French Hill (AR-2) joined Mayor Mark Stodola to celebrate the official announcement of the a $6.185M TIGER grant awarded by the US Department of Transportation to the Little Rock Port Authority. The funds will be used to support the Little Rock Port Authority Growth Initiative to construct improvements to the existing slackwater harbor area, including a new dock with direct dock-to-rail capability; and add new rail storage. “We are celebrating today because getting a TIGER grant is a big deal,” said Congressman French Hill.