Federal Government News

01 Apr 2020

Australia Cruise Ship Evictions Tread Diplomacy Tightrope

© Tamme Wichmann / Adobe Stock

Australia is pushing foreign-flagged cruise ships to leave its territorial waters amid the coronavirus pandemic, walking a diplomatic tightrope as it also tries to bring home citizens trapped on ships abroad.Western Australia state Premier Mark McGowan on Wednesday called on the federal government to kick out the German-owned MV Artania after the crew was reported to have asked the Australian Border Force (ABF) for permission to stay until April 14.“If what’s required is to clean the ship as a condition of getting it underway, well then do that ...

30 Mar 2020

What Will COVID-19 Mean for US Offshore Wind?

© Bragapictures / Adobe Stock

What will COVID-19 mean for the offshore wind industry? An industry not yet spinning on its own.Epitomized by the roller coaster ride that defined the stock market over the last few weeks, unpredictability has emerged as one of the few certainties of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis. Every industry has seen the effects of the pandemic, from hospitality, to travel, and even to the renewable energy sector. Indeed, even though the US offshore wind industry is not yet fully established


27 Mar 2020

Dredgers Make Way for USNS Comfort in New York

USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) takes on fuel and supplies at Naval Station Norfolk, Va. in preparation to deploy to New York in support of the nation’s COVID-19 response efforts and will serve as a referral hospital for non-COVID-19 patients currently admitted to shore-based hospitals. (U.S. Navy photo by Jim Kohler)

Dredgers are expediting operations in New York to make way for the U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort, which will dock in the epicenter of America's COVID-19 outbreak to assist hospitals that become overrun by the pandemic.Dredging contractor Donjon Marine Co., Inc. was contacted last week and asked to begin dredging Manhattan Cruise Terminal’s Berth 4 in anticipation of the arrival of the ship, which under the order of President Trump will serve as a relief hospital facility for non-coronavirus patients needing hospital care.

30 Mar 2020

AAM Takes Over Hydrogen Ferry New Build

(Photo: All American Marine)

All American Marine, Inc. (AAM) won a contract by SWITCH Maritime (SW/TCH) to complete the aluminum construction and outfitting of a 70-foot 84-passenger zero-emissions, hydrogen-powered, electric drive ferry that will operate in the California Bay Area (referred to as the ‘Water-Go-Round’ project).Prior to transfer to AAM, the project had begun at Bay Ship & Yacht shipyard in Alameda, Calif. where the aluminum hull and superstructure had been started. Bronson Lamb, AAM Marketing Manager


20 Mar 2020

California Asks Trump to Deploy USNS Mecy to LA 'Immediately'

USNS Mercy (Photo: U.S. Navy photo by Kelsey L. Adams)

California’s governor on Thursday asked President Donald Trump to send a U.S. Navy hospital ship to the port of Los Angeles “immediately” as the state braces for an expected surge in the number of coronavirus cases over the next eight weeks.Trump said earlier this week the Navy hospital ships Mercy and Comfort would be pressed into service, one on each coast, as healthcare systems become badly strained during the pandemic.But U.S. defense officials have said the ships were not yet ready to sail on the emergency mission


20 Mar 2020

Dredging: Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce

(Photo: Dredging Contractors of America)

On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) released guidance to help state and local jurisdictions and the private sector identify and manage their essential workforce while responding to COVID-19.The Dredging Contractors of America (DCA) helped the federal government develop this first-of-a-kind guidance on Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.“This is why Government Coordinating Councils and Sector Coordinating Councils are so important.

24 Feb 2020

Insights: Jennifer Carpenter, AWO President & CEO

Jennifer Carpenter (Photo: AWO)

Jennifer A. Carpenter serves as President & CEO of The American Waterways Operators (AWO), the national trade association representing the inland and coastal tugboat, towboat and barge industry. Carpenter joined AWO in August 1990 and became President & CEO in January 2020. Before assuming her current position, she worked her way up the hawsepipe from Government Affairs Assistant to Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, holding a series of progressively responsible positions including Manager-Regulatory Issues


18 Feb 2020

The Federal Government’s 2020 Inland Impact

© William J. Chizek / Adobe Stock

It is often difficult to push through the federal government morass to focus on the issues that actually matter to the inland operator. While 2020 inevitably will be a contentious year in American politics, it is critical to stay focused on the items that will have direct impact on the U.S. maritime industry. From a potential new Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) bill to potential Jones Act challenges, 2020 will be an important year for inland operators to stay politically engaged.Work on WRDAJanuary marked the beginning of Congress’ work in earnest toward introducing a new WRDA bill.

07 Jan 2020

IMO 2020: U.S. Restricts the Use of Certain Fuels in Scrubber Vessels

Copyright: diegocardini/AdobeStock

With the January 1 implementation of IMO 2020, which requires dramatic reductions in the sulfur content of emissions from ocean-going vessels, the United States government issued a new rule that it asserts actually facilitates the distribution of compliant fuel.The US Environmental Protection Agency asserts that it is taking steps to allow for the distribution of distillate fuel with sulfur content of up to 5,000 ppm sulfur—something that it asserts was previously prohibited.

30 Dec 2019

The Top 10 Workboat Stories for 2019

Credit: St. Louis Regional Freightway

Choosing the year’s ‘top stories’ is always a difficult task. Many compelling story threads played out, each dramatically impacting the North American waterfront, and in particular, the workboat sector – each in their own unique way.The Infrastructure Battle ContinuesThe EXECUTIVE SUMMARY H.R. 2396, the “Full Utilization of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Act”, will ensure that the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund is used for its intended purpose – maintaining Federally-authorized harbors. The legislation would allow the U.S.

27 Dec 2019

INSIGHTS: Niels Aalund

Niels Aalund was elected President of the International Propeller Club at their 93rd International Convention and Conference. The prominent maritime industry stakeholder will serve a two-year term, commencing from October 17th. Aalund, a well-known maritime subject matter expert and executive, also serves as an Officer and as Senior Vice President of the West Gulf Maritime Association (WGMA). WGMA communicates and coordinates with various governmental entities throughout the West Gulf


26 Dec 2019

Protecting Ports from Sea Level Rise

Vicinity Map Seagate Boston. (Image courtesy Tighe & Bond)

Coastal flooding disasters have occurred periodically through history often followed by construction of flood defenses to help ensure it does not happen again. One of the most well known was the 1953 North Sea Flood in the Netherlands when a storm surge occurred on top of astronomical high tides causing thousands of deaths, property and economic damages. The Dutch and UK reacted and increased construction of sea defenses including storm surge barriers, such as the Delta Works and River Thames barriers.

22 Dec 2019

$138M Ok'd for Charleston Harbor Project

Image: South Carolina Ports Authority

US President Donald Trump approved $138 million for the Charleston Harbor Deepening Project as part of the Energy and Water Appropriations Bill in the 2020 Budget.According to a statement from South Carolina Ports Authority, both the Senate and the House voted to approve the appropriations bill this week as part of the fiscal year 2020 funding package, and Trump signed it into law Friday."This enormous step forward means the project is fully funded to completion and on track to achieve a 52-foot depth in 2021," it said.S.C.

10 Dec 2019

New Cruise Ships Start Build in Germany

Image: MV WERFTEN Wismar GmbH

Genting Hong Kong and its Hong Kong–German shipbuilding group, MV Werften, announced a new Universal Class of cruise ships targeted at customers outside of Genting's cruise brand portfolio of Dream, Crystal and Star.The keel-laying of the second 208,000 gross ton Global Class ship for Dream Cruises took place December 10 at MV WERFTEN in Rostock.The midship section of the Global Class ship is being produced in Rostock. The transfer of the first 160,000 gross ton midship section


02 Dec 2019

REGULATORY REVIEW: Subchapter M

Image Credit: (Captain) Pat Folan

One Year In: Industry SME (Captain) Pat Folan weighs in from the front lines.It has been an interesting year for towing industry. As the new Subchapter M towboat rule rolled out, it didn’t take long to discover that the regulation wasn’t perfect. As stakeholders look ahead to what comes next, it is also helpful to take a look back at what went right, what didn’t, and more importantly – why.The U.S. Coast GuardThe US Coast Guard does not have the manpower to add more than 5,000 vessels to its workload.

21 Nov 2019

NJ Governor Doubles Offshore Wind Goal

Governor Phil Murphy, alongside First Lady Tammy Murphy and former Vice President Al Gore, signs an executive order more than doubling New Jersey’s offshore wind goal on November 19, 2019, at Liberty Science Center. (Edwin J. Torres/Governor’s Office)

As New Jersey steps up efforts to eliminate fossil fuels over the next three decades, the state is more than doubling its target for offshore-wind energy production under an executive order signed by Gov. Phil Murphy.The order would increase the goal to 7,500 megawatts by 2035, from 3,500 set for 2030.Murphy made the announcement with former Vice President Al Gore, a clean energy advocate, at a news conference in Jersey City at Liberty Science Center.The Executive Order will deliver the clean


20 Nov 2019

Fairway Dredging Project Remains on Track

Image: © WSV

Port of Hamburg is continuing its dredging projects on the Elbe River as per plan. The second hopper dredger named Bonny River has been conducting dredging operations on the federal stretch and taking the spoil to the UWA - underwater dredged material disposal site at Medemrinne, from October.Built in 2018, the ‘Bonny River’ has a hold capacity of over 16,000 cubic meters; consequently having a highly efficient performance level.The holding area near Brunsbüttel and the widening work on the WSV - federal waterways and shipping stretch are finished.

17 Nov 2019

Nigeria to Pedal Maritime to Mainstream

Group photograph of delegates at the opening of a two-day Regional Workshop on UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework. Photo: NIMASA

The Nigerian Minister of Transportation, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi has disclosed that the Federal Government  will ensure the maritime sector gets into the mainstream of economic strategy as it will engender economic growth and prosperity.The Minister said that the Maritime Transport Plan and Strategy when fully completed will also provide a robust enabling framework for achieving Nigerian maritime objective and foster Public, Private sector collaboration and inter-regional cooperation.

14 Nov 2019

Germany Mulls Onshore Power in Seaports

Ralf Nagel. Photo: German Shipowners’ Association

German federal government took a step to make onshore power in seaports more attractive; this week the environment ministers of the federal and state governments will be meeting in Hamburg to discuss onshore power initiatives in Germany.Against this backdrop, the German Shipowners’ Association (Verband Deutscher Reeder, VDR) welcomes plans to provide ships with onshore power while on berth in German ports.“We are united in our goal to further improve the climate and the air quality in the ports


24 Oct 2019

Maritime Risk Symposium, Nov. 12-15 at SUNY Maritime

© Oleksii Fadieiev/Adobe Stock

The State University of New York Maritime College, in collaboration with the U.S. Coast Guard, National Academy of Sciences, academic institutions, industry partners, and federal, state and local agencies, will host the 10th Annual Maritime Risk Symposium (MRS 2019) Nov. 13-15, 2019, at New York Maritime College located in the Bronx, New York.MRS 2019 will bring together academics, government and commercial entities to discuss the threats, challenges and risks associated with the Marine Transportation System with a focus on current and future marine transportation challenges and threats.

16 Sep 2019

Offshore Wind Conference Set for SUNY Maritime

© peterschreiber.media/Adobe Stock

The Center of Excellence for Offshore Renewable Energy at the State University of New York Maritime College and the Maritime Industry Museum at Fort Schuyler, are hosting the Ocean Wind Energy Conference on Thursday, September 26, 2019 at the Maritime Academic Center, SUNY Maritime College.Serving as the keynote speaker is Alana Duerr, Ph.D., Director, Offshore Wind North America, DNV GL - Renewables Advisory, who will offer insight to opportunities for maritime industry support of Ocean Wind Energy development and sustainment for many years to come.

07 Oct 2019

Transborders Signs up MOL on FLNG Solution

Image: Transborders Energy

Perth-based company Transborders Energy has entered a Joint Study Agreement (JSA) to work with Japan's Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) to together continue the development of its Floating LNG (FLNG) Solution and to pursue its deployment on a range of stranded offshore gas resource opportunities.Transborders’ FLNG Solution provides a pre-determined 1.3 MTPA FLNG development concept with a package of streamlined commercial & regulatory approval framework (including LNG buyers) to gas resource owners.

11 Oct 2019

SHORTSEA SHIPPING: All the Right Moves (Finally)

The Baton Rouge-NOLA container on barge service / (CREDIT: Port of New Orleans)

Marine Highways Gain Traction in the Intermodal Supply Chain.In the United States, landside infrastructure is at a crisis point. Congestion at the big hub ports, exacerbated by imperfect intermodal interfaces with surface transport serving cargo hinterlands is at the heart of the matter. As politicians bicker over a possible infrastructure package, the Highway Trust Fund, funded by taxes on gasoline and diesel fuel, has continued its downward journey towards further deficits (now $144 billion). And, where countless U.S.

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