Brookings Institution News

17 Sep 2018

Maritime Industry's Slow Boat to Cyber Security

© vectorfusionart/AdobeStock

Ports making up for lost timeDespite the critical role the maritime transportation system plays in the economic health of the United States, and despite its fairly recent embrace of all things automated – cranes, vehicles, surveillance and even vessels – the sector has been slow to warm to the need to protect its digital systems and assets.Post 9/11, security concerns about the nation’s borders, air space and infrastructure, including ports, moved front and center for a brief moment before other concerns…

01 Mar 2017

Last Port of Call for the U.S. Merchant Marine?

Part II in a two-part series, continued from the January 2017 edition of Maritime Reporter & Engineering News. Read Part I here. If reliance on the foreign commercial market is risky because of uncertain reliability, then what of U.S. Government ownership of a fleet of vessels? That has also been on the menu since the early 20th century. President Woodrow Wilson proposed in September 1914 that the U.S. Government acquire commercial cargo vessels. Congress disagreed, which delayed enactment of the President’s proposal until the Shipping Act, 1916. A compromise was struck to permit U.S. Government ownership as a war time measure – but all vessels so acquired had to be sold to private owners within five years of the end of the war.

06 Feb 2017

Last Port of Call for the US Merchant Marine?

(Photo: © Lefteris Papaulakis / Adobe Stock)

The privately owned U.S.-flag foreign trading fleet, which is an essential component of U.S. sealift capability, stands on the edge of a precipice. The fleet – roughly stable in terms of cargo carrying capacity from 2000 to 2012 – has declined from 106 vessels in 2012 to 78 vessels at October 30, 2016 primarily because of a substantial decline in available U.S. Government-reserved cargo. The size of the fleet has reached a point where the viability of the U.S.-flag industry involved in foreign trade – including its trained mariners…

30 Oct 2015

Despite Agreements, U.S.-China Naval Risks Linger

In 2013, a U.S. guided-missile ship veered sharply to avoid a Chinese navy vessel that tried to block its path in the disputed South China Sea, according to the U.S. account. They are the types of risky encounters that Beijing and Washington have sought to avoid by stepping up efforts to implement a web of military communications agreements. But the protocols in place are mostly non-binding, contain exceptions, and at times are interpreted differently by the two sides, highlighting the risk of an unwanted escalation of tensions as the United States asserts its naval power more forcefully to counter China's maritime claims. Washington…

09 Jul 2015

US Crude Export Would Help Europe -Czech Republic

Lifting the U.S. ban on oil exports would bolster energy security in Europe by allowing countries to find alternative sources, the Czech Republic ambassador to the United States told lawmakers considering a bill to do away with the trade restriction. "The larger the number of stable democracies among the world's exporters, the more robust the energy security of the Czech Republic and the European Union will be," Petr Gandalovic, the ambassador told the panel the House subcommittee on Energy and Power on Thursday. The country has worked to reduce its dependence on oil and gas from Russia, the top energy supplier to many Eastern European countries. A recently built oil pipeline connects the Czech Republic to the Italian port of Trieste via Germany.

04 Jun 2015

SUNY Maritime Ranked a Top College

Photo: SUNY Maritime College

SUNY Maritime College has been ranked by a national think tank as the top public college in the nation in graduate earnings, and for providing the highest value-added in mid-career earnings. A recent study by the Brookings Institution found that SUNY Maritime College graduates earned, on average, more than $121,000 a year in the decade following the completion of their degrees, more than their counterparts at national institutions such as Harvard and Yale. Maritime College grads also realized a value-added 42 percentage…

26 Feb 2015

Brookings Institution Hosting Panels on LNG Marine Fuel

The Brookings Institution's Charles Ebinger will moderate the panels (Photo courtesy of the Brookings Institution)

The Brookings Institution, a Washington D.C.-based think tank, will host a two-panel discussion on the use of LNG as a marine fuel on Tuesday, March 3, the organization announced today. The panels are part of the Institution's Energy Security and Climate Initiative (ESCI). The first panel will examine evolving policy, regulatory, and environmental factors associated with using LNG as a marine fuel. The second panel will address emerging opportunities and barriers to adoption. ESCI Senior Fellow Charles Ebinger will provide introductory remarks and then moderate the discussion.

20 Jan 2015

TSA, Coast Guard in AK Pot Discussion

Presiding over busy waterways and airspace that serve as unofficial highways of an inhospitable state twice the size of Texas, the federal government has a looming presence over Alaska and its famously live-and-let-live residents. And Uncle Sam considers marijuana illegal over every inch. This poses unique hurdles for entrepreneurs hoping to capitalize on an Alaska move to legalize recreational marijuana, and who seek to grow and process products to be marketed across the state, much of which is accessible only via transport links policed by U.S. agencies and governed by federal law. To get around such obstacles, some investors say they plan to launch location-specific seed-to-sale businesses…

30 Oct 2014

Easing US Oil Export Ban Unlikey to Raise Gasoline Prices

A government study on Thursday essentially supported the notion that easing the decades-old restriction on exporting U.S. crude was more likely to lower than raise gasoline prices for American motorists, a conclusion that could ease concerns among lawmakers about changing the policy. U.S. gasoline prices are mainly set by global oil prices, the Energy Information Administration said in a highly anticipated analysis. "The effect that a relaxation of current limitations on U.S. crude oil exports would have on U.S. gasoline prices would likely depend on its effect on international crude oil prices, such as Brent, rather than its effect on domestic crude prices," said the EIA.

14 Oct 2014

Ending US Oil Export Ban Would Not Raise Gasoline Prices - Study

Ending a 40-year old ban on U.S. crude oil exports would not raise domestic gasoline prices because it would put more petroleum onto global markets, where fuel prices are primarily set, a study by The Aspen Institute said on Tuesday. As the U.S. oil boom of the last six years builds an excess of light crude along the Gulf Coast refining hub, calls have risen for Congress and the Obama administration to relax the ban on shipments to global customers. The restriction was put in place in the 1970s following the Arab oil embargo. Many politicians have not embraced lifting the ban so far, fearing that they could be punished at the ballot box for any increase in gasoline prices.

13 Oct 2014

Taking Cyber Risks Seriously

Once, the stars were all that mariners needed to navigate the seas. Today, maritime companies rely on hi-tech systems to operate and navigate equally hi-tech vessels. All of that comes with new and significant risks. On one side, automation has its benefits, especially as crews grew smaller and ships got bigger. On the flip side, however, marine technology, like most other technology, comes with its own risks. Today’s technologies often require Internet connectivity to function properly. A recent study by Boston-based security company Rapid7 found more than 100,000 devices – from traffic signal equipment to oil and gas monitors – were connected to the Internet using serial ports with inadequate security leaving them vulnerable to breaches or hacking.

07 Jun 2014

Senior U.S., Iranian Officials To Meet In Geneva

Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns

The United States said on Saturday it will send its No. 2 diplomat to Geneva to meet senior Iranian officials on Monday and Tuesday in what appeared an effort to break a logjam in wider negotiations over Tehran's nuclear program. Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns, who led secret U.S.-Iranian negotiations that helped bring about a Nov. 24 interim nuclear agreement between Iran and the major powers, will head a U.S. delegation. Under Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, the primary U.S.

23 Apr 2014

Global Shipping Exposed to Cyber Threats

The next hacker playground: the open seas - and the oil tankers and container vessels that ship 90 percent of the goods moved around the planet. In this internet age, as more devices are hooked up online, so they become more vulnerable to attack. As industries like maritime and energy connect ships, containers and rigs to computer networks, they expose weaknesses that hackers can exploit. Hackers recently shut down a floating oil rig by tilting it, while another rig was so riddled with computer malware that it took 19 days to make it seaworthy again…

24 Feb 2014

Defense: USS Cole Bomber Should Not Face Death

Photograph by Sgt. Don L. Maes, USMC

Defense lawyers for the Saudi man charged with masterminding the 2000 USS Cole bombing that killed 17 American sailors argued on Friday he should not face the death penalty because the murders were not premeditated. The move was among several pre-trial motions heard in the murder case against Abd al-Rahim al Nashiri at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, viewed by closed-circuit television at Fort Meade. The charges Nashiri is faced with - among them murder, terrorism and conspiracy - carry the death penalty.

27 Jan 2013

ExxonMobil Supports LNG Free Trade

LNG Carrier: Photo credit ExxonMobil

Major oil company ExxonMobil supports export of US Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) which it considers will benefit the whole economy. Technology developed by the oil and gas industry has opened up vast energy resources across the country, which has resulted in a tremendous increase in U.S. oil and natural gas production and reserves. This increase in production has created jobs, strengthened businesses and investment, and revitalized cities and regions across America, a trend which will likely continue to grow in coming years.

29 May 2012

Cropper Named President of Cal Maritime

Thomas A. Cropper, Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy, was named president of California Maritime Academy.

The California State University Board of Trustees has named Thomas A. Cropper, Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy, as president of California Maritime Academy. "I am pleased and honored to be chosen as the next president of the California Maritime Academy, and look forward to working closely with the exceptional students, staff and faculty," said Cropper. Cropper was among the finalists for the position to succeed retiring President William B. Eisenhardt, who has served as president since 2001. He is expected to begin in his new role as president on July 1 following retirement from active duty.

30 Apr 2002

New Legislation will Affect Maritime Community

The Associate Under Secretary for Maritime & Land Security, Transportation Security Administration, will announce new legislation affecting the maritime community at IIR's forthcoming "Seaport Security" conference to be held on June 10-12, 2002 in New Jersey. In the keynote address, Rear Admiral Bennis will outline major changes to the responsibilities of The Coast Guard, US Customs, port authorities, terminal operators and federal, state and local law enforcement, designed to ensure the security of the seaport infrastructure from terrorist attack. The changes are expected to impact operation of the entire transportation chain. Rear Admiral Bennis, now retired from the US Coast Guard, is no stranger to the impact of terrorist attack on the homeland.

06 May 2002

Associate Under Secretary for Maritime & Land Security To Discuss Security Challenges

The Associate Under Secretary for Maritime & Land Security, Transportation Security Administration, will discuss challenges affecting the maritime community at IIR's forthcoming "Seaport Security" conference to be held on June 10-12, 2002 in New Jersey. In the keynote address, Richard Bennis will discuss areas of security TSA will be exploring with the maritime industry and other government agencies to ensure the security of seaports and other transportation systems from terrorist attacks. Bennis, a retired rear admiral from the US Coast Guard, is no stranger to the impact of terrorist attack on the homeland. As the Captain of the Port and Commander of Coast Guard Activities New York, he led the Coast Guard response to the attack on the World Trade Center.

03 Apr 2007

Brookings Institution to Sponsor Webcast of CNO Speech

Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Mullen announces the naming of DDG 108 as USS Wayne E. Meyer at a ceremony celebrating the deliverance of the 100th Aegis Weapons System to the Navy. The ship was named after retired Rear Adm. Meyer, who is widely regarded as the "The Father of Aegis" after spearheading the development of the defense system, and will fittingly receive the 100th system. U.S. Sailors will have a unique opportunity April 3 to hear Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Mullen discuss the Navy's course for the future during a Webcast sponsored by The Brookings Institution. The CNO will be speaking to the Brookings audience about the Navy's effort to formulate a new maritime strategy and about the challenges the service faces over the long term.

23 Mar 2007

The U.S. Navy Beyond Iraq - Sea Power for a New Era

Michael G. Mullen, chief of naval operations, for a discussion of the U.S. challenges of the twenty- first century. In his almost forty years of service, Adm. transformation of U.S. principal agent of change. discussion.

21 Mar 2003

Hearing Examines Containers

The Senate Governmental Affairs Committee conducted a Hearing on Cargo Container Security

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