WSS Helps Provide Safe Arctic Passage

(Press Release)
Thursday, July 19, 2012

Wilhelmsen Ships Service (WSS) is helping clients execute voyages through the Northern Sea Route (NSR) as this new trade lane begins to open up new opportunities for shipping.

WSS is working with Russian Arctic shipping specialist Rosatomflot for ice-breaking assistance and has developed a programme to assists clients with technical, legal and insurance preparations they must satisfy to make the journey safely.

The NSR is currently open between 1 July and 1 November but holds out the long-term prospect of a faster route between Northern Europe and North Asia/Alaska, cutting the journey time on an Europe-Asia voyage from 34 days to 22 days. This has the potential to provide substantial savings in fuel consumption and emissions, as well as hastening the development of oil and gas reserves in the Arctic.

WSS Ships Agency Service Manager Eivind Jespersen said: “Our experience is that many shipowners are closely following the development of the Northern Sea Route. Until now they have been reluctant to pursue this interest until their concerns are resolved. WSS Norway in partnership with WSS Russia is able to offer expert advice and assistance necessary to make voyages through the NSR a reality.”

In 2011, 34 voyages carried more than 820,000 tonnes of cargo via the NSR, a figure likely to rise to 1m tonnes in 2012. Summer sea ice levels on the route have decreased about 12% over the last decade and the warming climate ice could bring ice-free summers by 2050, according to Norwegian Polar Institute estimates.

Russia is promoting the NSR as an alternative to routeing vessels through the Panama or Suez canals and its government is preparing regulations for foreign civilian vessels with the corresponding law expected to be approved by Russian parliament this year.

WSS expertise in the region gives its experts first-hand knowledge of navigation conditions and practical considerations for safe operations in the NSR. WSS takes advantage of high quality meteorological data from the Norwegian Meteorological Institute for predictable ice conditions, including ice charts, edge positions and long term weather prognosis.

“The NSR is a new global route and comes with significant challenges in terms of navigation but the risks can be managed by good preparation,” continues Mr Jespersen. “We recommend extensive research and training prior to NSR voyages both onboard and on shore. Highly competent crew in particular makes a huge difference.”

The average cost for a single NSR passage is about 10% greater than a Suez canal transit, however this is negotiable for multiple transits. Each transit is considered a separate project as to preparations, such as application for permission to the Russian authorities, equipment and crew training.

Issues that owners need to be aware of before navigating the NSR include amendments to the terms of their P&I and hull and machinery insurance cover. In addition, paper charts and publications are in Russian only and ice pilots do not always speak languages other than Russian.

To make the journey, all vessels must comply with Russian rules for the NSR, including its guide and regulations for navigation and pilotage as well as requirements for vessel design and construction, ice operations and knowledge of tariffs for icebreaking services. At present it takes two to three weeks to get a ship accepted to transit the NSR and the vessel nominated must be the highest, 1A ice class.

WSS will act as agent only for principals requesting NSR transit and the principal will issue a letter of authorization to WSS which will negotiate the transit on their behalf.


 

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

People & Company News

Commodity Giant Steps out of the Shadows

A detailed new case study scrutinizing the risk-management Swiss-based Trafigura is the latest effort to "demystify" the once-secretive commodity trading industry,

Blackstone Unlikely to Enter Commodities Trade

Blackstone exec doesn't expect move into commodities in near term Blackstone Group LP is unlikely to make a foray into commodity trading in the short term as

Cargill to Buy 100,000mt of Certified Ivorian Cocoa

U.S. agribusiness trader Cargill aims to purchase 100,000 metric tons of certified Ivorian cocoa this season, up slightly from 95,000 metric tons last season, West

Navigation

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,

Nigeria Maritime Academy Gets Bridge Simulator

A NAUTIS Full Mission Bridge Simulator was purchased and delivered to the Maritime Academy of Nigeria in Oron. The new simulator will be used to provide qualitative

S.Korean Ferry Master Faces Investigation

The captain of the South Korean ferry that capsized off the southwest coast was facing a criminal investigation on Thursday, an official said, amid unconfirmed

Arctic Operations

Canada Opts Out of Arctic Council Meeting

Canadian Environment Minister Leona Aglukkaq stated that a principled stand had been taken by Ottawa against Moscow's intervention in events in Ukraine, reports

Treadwell: Arctic Security Should Be National Priority

Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell delivered the keynote address yesterday at the Arctic Collaborative Workshop in Fairbanks. Treadwell discussed five reasons why

Coast Guard Battles 24-inch Plate Ice

Coast Guard Cutters Morro Bay and Katmai Bay, homeported in Cleveland and Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., conducted ice breaking operations in Marquette, Mich., Sunday.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Navigation Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Sonar
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: 0.1384 sec (7 req/sec)