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Great Lakes Ships

Spending HMT Will End Dredging Crisis

Using the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund for its intended purpose will end the dredging crisis on the Great Lakes declared a stone shipper at a briefing for the Great Lakes delegation in Washington, DC on April 2 hosted by Great Lakes Maritime Task Force.  “We need approximately $200m to clear the dredging backlog on the Great Lakes,” said Thomas Buck, President and Chief Executive Officer of Carmeuse Lime & Stone.  “The fund collects $1.1b annually, but only spends $700m.  That leaves a surplus of nearly $5b. It’s time to put the ‘trust’ back in the Trust Fund.” Carmeuse Lime & Stone operates three large stone quarries that ship via the Great Lakes.  In 2008, those quarries loaded 14 million tons of aggregate and fluxstone into Great Lakes freighters.  Buck used a sampling of vessel loadings to illustrate the negative impacts of the dredging crisis on Carmeuse.  “In June, a vessel with a designed carrying capacity of 28,300 net tons left our plant in Calcite, Michigan, with only a little more than 24,000 tons in her holds.  The dredging crisis cost us nearly 15 percent of the vessel’s carrying capacity.” Another vessel left Carmeuse’s Cedarville, Michigan, quarry with more than 4,400 tons of carrying capacity unused. The reason vessels cannot carry full loads is decades of inadequate funding for dredging.  The U.S


Largest Potential Lakes Project in Generation

Congress is considering the possible funding of the construction of a new lock at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, a half-billion dollar undertaking that would rank as the largest navigation infrastructure project on the Great Lakes in a generation. Construction of a new lock at “the Soo” would bring up to 250 jobs annually to northern Michigan and continue for a decade.  Estimated cost of the lock is about $475m


WRDA Passage to End Lakes Dredging Crisis

The end of the dredging crisis on the Great Lakes moved a giant step closer today when a key House committee approved legislation requiring the federal government to spend all the tax dollars it collects for dredging on dredging rather than use nearly half to balance the budget - at least on paper.  Section 2007 of H.R. 5892, the Water Resources Development Act of 2010, mandates that all tax revenues annually deposited in the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) be used to dredge the


Great Lakes Shipping Industry Urges Fast WRRDA Approval

James H.I Weakley: Photo GLMTF

The Great Lakes shipping industry is calling on Congress to quickly pass the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) approved by the House/Senate conference committee. The bill contains provisions that will significantly reduce the dredging backlog on the Great Lakes by increasing the amount of tax dollars the government spends on maintaining deep-draft ports and waterways and designating the Great Lakes a “navigation system” for the purposes of maintenance dredging.


Bi-national Study Highlights Green Advantages

GRT_Lakes_Stone Carrier web.jpg

A comprehensive report released today has defined the modal and environmental advantages of using marine shipping to transport goods in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway region. A study titled The Environmental and Social Impacts of Marine Transport in the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway Region was conducted by Ontario transportation consultants Research and Traffic Group, and peer reviewed by independent experts in the U.S. and Canada


Great Lakes Shipping Returns to Normal

Shipping on the Great Lakes should be back to normal by early Monday evening, Canadian marine authorities said, as a 730-ft. freighter, which crashed into a lift bridge across the Welland Canal, has been towed away. "They're raising the bridge at the moment and they will have to make sure it (is secure) before telling the ships to move into the canal," said Sylvie Moncion, a spokeswoman for the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corp., which operates the key marine route into central North America


LCA Endorses Government Report

U.S.-flag shipping on the Great Lakes provides efficient, safe, and environmentally sound transportation services to industries that are the backbone of the American economy finds a report released on February 12 by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration.   The U.S.-flag Lakes fleet is “competitive with other modes of freight transportation in the movement of dry-bulk commodities and appears to be adequately capitalized to meet current market


Malfunction Underscores Need for Second Poe-Sized Lock

A malfunction of the Poe Lock at Sault Ste. Marie, , on September 24 has illustrated the pressing need for Congress to appropriate the funds to build another lock capable of handling the largest U.S.-Flag Great Lakes freighters. Although the vessel delays totaled only about three hours, had the problem been more severe, cargo movement on the Lakes would have slowed to a trickle. U.S.-Flag Lakers whose length and/or beam restrict them to the Poe Lock represent 70 percent of U.S


Kvaerner Masa-Yards Receives Contract

Kvaerner Masa Marine (KMM) and Masa-Yards Arctic Technology Center (MARC), both part of the Kvaerner Masa-Yards Group, were recently awarded a contract to provide ice breaking consulting services and model testing for the USCG Great Lakes Icebreaker currently being designed by Marinette Marine Corporation (MMC) a division of Manitowoc Marine Group. The new icebreaker will be named Mackinaw in honor of the heavy icebreaker that it is replacing. The new Mackinaw will be a


Lakes Leaders Declare Dredging State of Emergency

The Administration’s proposal to slash the Great Lakes dredging budget by 32 percent in FY12 has the Great Lakes shipping industry declaring a State of Emergency.  The Administration’s proposed appropriation for Lakes dredging next year will remove the smallest amount of sediment since the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers started keeping records more than half a century ago.  As a result, only 11 of the 83 U.S ports on the Great Lakes will be dredged.


June US-flag Great Lakes Shipping Unchanged from 2016

© Gerald Bernard / Adobe Stock

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 9.7 million tons of cargo on the Great Lakes in June, a virtual repeat of a year ago, according to the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA).  However, this June’s shipments were down 3


Canada Extends St. Lawrence Seaway Agreement

Canadian transport minister Marc Garneau announced a five-year extension to the Government of Canada’s agreement with the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation to manage, maintain and operate the Seaway. This extends the existing agreement until March 31, 2023


Great Lakes Limestone Trade Slides in June

© haveseen / Adobe Stock

 Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 3,455,019 tons in June, a decrease of 7.3 percent compared to a year ago, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported. June’s loadings were also 8.9 percent below the month’s five-year average.  


US-flag Great Lakes Shipping Steady in May

© johnsroad7 / Adobe Stock

U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 9.5 million tons of cargo in May, a virtual repeat of a year ago, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported. The float totaled 9,496,663 tons this May and 9,473,709 tons a year ago. This May’s shipments were, however


Geo Gradel Tug and Barge Enter Drydock

Photo: Great Lakes Shipyard

Great Lakes Shipyard said it was awarded a contract for drydocking and repairs by Geo Gradel & Co. for tug George Gradel  and barge Moby Dick.   The contract for the 2,400 HP tug George Gradel includes steel repairs, keel cooler repairs


Great Lakes Pilotages Go Live with Saab

Photo: Saab

The Canadian Great Lakes Pilotage Authority (GLPA) and the Great Lakes Pilotage Division of the U.S. Coast Guard have opened the 2017 shipping season using an upgraded Great Lakes Pilot Management System based on the latest version of Saab’s KleinPilot.  


Great Lakes/Seaway Iron Ore Trade Up Slightly in May

© James Pintar / Adobe Stock

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway totaled 6.1 million tons in May, an increase of 1.8 percent compared to a year ago, the Lakes Carriers' Association (LCA) reported. However, shipments trailed the month’s 5-year average by 5 percent.  


Great Lakes Limestone Trade Slides in May

© haveseen / Adobe Stock

Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 3.6 million tons in May, a decrease of 5.4 percent compared to a year ago, the Lake Carriers’ Association  (LCA) reported. May’s loadings were, however, slightly above the month’s five-year average.


OP/Ed: CVIDA Good for Environment & Economy

© Kenneth Keifer / Adobe Stock

Commercial Vessel Incidental Discharge Act (CVIDA): good for the environment, good for the economy   I think it safe to say everyone agrees the discharge of ballast water has introduced non-native species to ports and harbors worldwide and more must be done to stop future invasions


Spring Cargo Numbers Buoy Great Lakes-Seaway Shipping

The ocean-going vessel Federal Mackinac sails on the St. Lawrence Seaway this autumn. Photo Credit: The St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation

Spring cargo numbers from the St. Lawrence Seaway and U.S. ports are signaling a better year for Great Lakes-Seaway shipping. According to the latest figures from the St. Lawrence Seaway, total cargo shipments via the Seaway from the start of the shipping season (March 20 through April 30)


Great Lakes Iron Ore Trade Climbs in April

©  James Pintar / Adobe Stock

Shipments of iron ore on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway totaled 5.8 million tons in April, an increase of 8.8 percent compared to a year ago, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reported. Shipments topped the month’s five-year average by nearly 21 percent.  


Great Lakes Limestone Trade Falls 16.3% in April

© johnsroad7 / Adobe Stock

Shipments of limestone on the Great Lakes totaled 1,630,081 tons in April, a  decrease of 16.3 percent compared to a year ago, the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA) reports.  Loadings also trailed the month’s five-year average by 22.4 percent.  


Nearly Half of Interlake Fleet Fit with Scrubbers

Photo: Interlake Steamship Company

The M/V Mesabi Miner has sailed from Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding Company in Sturgeon Bay, Wis., becoming Interlake Steamship Company’s fourth self-unloading bulk carrier to be outfitted with exhaust gas scrubbers.    Interlake became the first U.S


Kelleys Island Ferry at Great Lakes Shipyard

Photo: Great Lakes Shipyard

 Great Lakes Shipyard was awarded a drydocking contract by Kelleys Island Ferry Boat Line for the M/V Carlee Emily. Maintenance work includes five-year drydocking, U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) inspection and surveys as well as miscellaneous routine repairs.  


Western Great Lakes Icebreaking Completed

The U.S. Coast Guard has concluded its domestic ice breaking operations in support of commercial navigation, known as Operation Taconite, throughout the Western Great Lakes, Tuesday.   As a result of warmer temperatures this winter, ice coverage was less than the multi-year average and had






 
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