Canada Ramps up Pressure on NY over BWT

Joseph Keefe
Friday, November 18, 2011

Yesterday’s well-attended ballast water policy teleconference briefing by the Canadian Minister of Transport served notice that Canada has no intention of allowing the state of New York to dictate ballast water regulations, nor impede commerce on the St. Laurence Seaway.

 

The message delivered by Canada’s Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities and for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, Pierre Poilievre, was simple enough: we do not agree with the state of New York on ballast water issues and we will not allow our ocean commerce to suffer because of it. The teleconference, broadcast from Ottawa, provided a briefing on ballast water requirements on the St. Lawrence Seaway.

 

Poilievre told journalists on Thursday morning, “Canada is very concerned with the New York ballast water standard.” Referring to New York’s position of a ballast water treatment standard that is 100 times more stringent than the IMO’s soon-to-be-ratified benchmark, he added that New York’s position, if enforced, could shut down traffic, domestic trade and trade with the United States. Today, Poilievre is scheduled to be in New York to discuss Canadian concerns with New York stakeholders. He’ll follow that up with a similar trip to Washington “in the next several months,” he said; to do the same with U.S. federal counterparts.

 

In response to questions and advice that the State of New York had already admitted that it had neither the capacity nor the wherewithal to enforce any ballast water standards, Poilievre insisted that the issue was bigger than enforcement alone and went directly to insurance issues. He added that ship owners would be reluctant to transit Canadian waters where these border New York due to concerns over insurance cover.

 

Also according to Poilievre, Canada has two goals with regard to ballast water regulations, especially where it comes to its common border with the state of New York. First foremost, he said, “We want to keep the St. Laurence Seaway open.” Secondly, he added, the ultimate way to do this was to ensure “compatible regulations for all jurisdictions along the Seaway.”

 

Separately, the U.S. House of Representatives this week passed legislation that would supersede the myriad of balkanized U.S. state regulations now in play on the U.S. side of the border. The bill, one which proposes to set a national standard for ballast water regulation of vessels and additionally calls for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set minimum standards for organisms in ballast water that would mirror International Maritime Organization (IMO) benchmarks. No Senate version of the bill has yet been offered.

 

In the absence of a federal standard, more than 25 U.S. states have enacted their own standards, some of which have been called unachievable by scientists working on the problem. Meanwhile, the EPA’s Vessel General Permit (VGP) declaration has been promised by the end of this month. The long awaited U.S. Coast Guard BWT standard could also come before the end of the year. Both the Coast Guard and the EPA remain coy on what either standard will entail. Either or both could trigger litigation from individual U.S. states.

 

Earlier this year, Dennis King and Patrick Hagen – two scientists actively studying the issue of invasive species – quantified the estimated global cost of outfitting about 68,000 vessels with ballast water treatment systems at about USD $68 billion, or roughly $1 million per ship. Between 2012 and 2015, as many as 10,000 ships annually are expected to be fitted with BWT equipment. Canada’s very public declarations this week may well serve as the wake-up call for U.S. legislators and regulators that the issue, long simmering as a back-burner problem, is coming to a head. In the meantime, ship operators and ballast water technology manufacturers – neither looking to make an expensive mistake in advance of concrete rulings – both sit on the sidelines, watching anxiously to see the outcome.

Maritime Reporter October 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Sapurakencana Wins 3 Petronas Oil blocks

SapuraKencana Petroleum Berhad today announced that it has entered into Sale and Purchase Agreements to acquire the entire interest of PETRONAS in 3 blocks offshore

Kemp Succeeds Semple at Wood Group

Wood Group announced following changes to its senior management team. Alan Semple, chief financial officer (CFO) has advised the board that he intends to

ST Engineering Rejigs Top Deck

Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering) today announced the appointment of senior management personnel to new key management positions in the

Technology

Sapurakencana Wins 3 Petronas Oil blocks

SapuraKencana Petroleum Berhad today announced that it has entered into Sale and Purchase Agreements to acquire the entire interest of PETRONAS in 3 blocks offshore

Time-out for Kwanza Drilling

Statoil has decided to cancel the Stena Carron rig contract after fulfilling the work commitments in the Statoil-operated blocks 38 and 39 in the Kwanza basin offshore Angola.

Maritime Reporter @ 75: The Daily Cartoon

Maritime Reporter & Engineering News was founded by John J. O'Malley (1905-1980) in 1939, and today ranks as the world's largest audited trade publication in the world serving the maritime industry,

Finance

ST Engineering Rejigs Top Deck

Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering) today announced the appointment of senior management personnel to new key management positions in the

MHI Receives "Best IR Award"

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) has received one of this year's "Best IR Awards" presented annually by the Japan Investor Relations Association (JIRA).

Houston Port Commission Approves budget

The Fiscal Year 2015 Operating and Capital Budget was approved Thursday during a special meeting of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority.   Projections

Environmental

Steven Palazzo Visits HII, Newport

Huntington Ingalls Industries today hosted Rep. Steven Palazzo, R-Miss., for a tour of the company's Newport News Shipbuilding division. Palazzo represents the fourth district of Mississippi,

Environmental Groups: IMO Polar Code Too Weak

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) today adopted the Polar Code aimed at regulating shipping in Polar Regions. Several environmental groups have criticized

Bouchard Vessels Honored by SCA

Forty-three Bouchard Transportation Co., Inc. vessels have been honored by The Chamber of Shipping America (CSA) with Certificates of Environmental Achievement.

News

USCG Assist Duck Hunters Near Harrington Beach Park

The Coast Guard and the Port Washington and Cedar Grove Fire Departments came to the assistance of two duck hunters on Lake Michigan Friday. The names of those involved are not being released.

Sapurakencana Wins 3 Petronas Oil blocks

SapuraKencana Petroleum Berhad today announced that it has entered into Sale and Purchase Agreements to acquire the entire interest of PETRONAS in 3 blocks offshore

Kemp Succeeds Semple at Wood Group

Wood Group announced following changes to its senior management team. Alan Semple, chief financial officer (CFO) has advised the board that he intends to

Marine Equipment

ST Engineering Rejigs Top Deck

Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering) today announced the appointment of senior management personnel to new key management positions in the

Time-out for Kwanza Drilling

Statoil has decided to cancel the Stena Carron rig contract after fulfilling the work commitments in the Statoil-operated blocks 38 and 39 in the Kwanza basin offshore Angola.

Sea Star Line: Equipment Replacement Plan on Track

Company Receives New Refrigerated Containers and Places Order for New Genset Equipment   Sea Star Line, LLC began receiving the first of its new 100 40’ and 45’

Marine Science

Baker Hughes to Present at Wells Fargo's 2014 Energy Symposium

Baker Hughes Incorporated announced today that the Company's Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, Derek Mathieson, will present at Wells Fargo's 2014 Energy Symposium on Wednesday,

ST Engineering Rejigs Top Deck

Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering) today announced the appointment of senior management personnel to new key management positions in the

Everett College to Launch New Research Boat

Everett Community College’s Ocean Research College Academy (ORCA) will launch its new research vesel on November 22 with a celebration at 11 a.m. at the Port of Everett.

Maritime Safety

USCG Assist Duck Hunters Near Harrington Beach Park

The Coast Guard and the Port Washington and Cedar Grove Fire Departments came to the assistance of two duck hunters on Lake Michigan Friday. The names of those involved are not being released.

HMAS Success Deploys to Middle East

After months of preparation, HMAS Success departed Garden Island in Sydney today for a six-month deployment to the Middle East Region to provide logistic support

7 Rescued from Sinking Freighter Near Haiti

Seven crewmembers were rescued after their 100-foot coastal freighter began taking on water and sank approximately 45 miles north off of Cap Haitien, Haiti, Friday.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Pipelines Port Authority Salvage Ship Simulators Sonar
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | 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: 0.3525 sec (3 req/sec)