World Maritime News
Challenges for the future
The US, whose government abandoned the Paris Agreement and did not support a global strategy for maritime de-carbonization along with other three countries, will develop its first hydrogen fuel cell ferry thanks to a US$ 3 million grant awarded by the California Air Resources Board. Built by the Bay Ship & Yacht Co. of Alameda, the vessel will become a trial for hydrogen fuel cell propulsion.
Norway introduced legislation in May to ban any kind of carbon emissions in the waters of UNESCO World Heritage-protected sites from 2026. As to propulsion, options are limited to some form of nuclear reactor, methanol, or Norway’s darling of the moment, hydrogen. The new fjord regulation leaves only eight years and it would be a challenge to get large, steady source of renewable hydrogen ready.
Meanwhile, China also recently announced it will operate an all-electric cruise vessel in the Yangtze River by the end of the year.
IMO’s Day of the Seafarer
Major maritime companies and organizations have launched multiple crew wellbeing initiatives to coincide with the IMO’s Day of the Seafarer on 25 June. At the same time
Mission to Seafarer Happiness Index which has been tracking wellbeing on board for several years, reported seafarer happiness improved in the first quarter 2018 but that connectivity with family and home remained a key point. However female seafarers are less happy on average than male seafarers, according to the index. Founder of the Happiness index told that Female seafarers felt intensely proud and felt that they were seafarers first above all else. It was only when others brought in issues of gender, bullying, and sexual harassment that happiness levels dropped. Female seafarers, if recognized, respected, and given the same amount of space, excel and are happy while doing so, but if they have these experiences, it has a hugely negative impact. If people suffer harassment and victimization they don’t tend to stick around.
Five risks to check in ship financing
China has been emerging as a major ship finance provider. But the country’s piling debt is one the risks we consider. Toward the end of May, China Energy Reserve and Chemicals Group, an oil and gas producer said it was unable to pay a US$ 350 million bond payment. This failure to honor its obligation is the epitome of the latest wave of defaults among large enterprises in China amid tightened credit conditions and increased interest rates. A growing lack of liquidity in those markets is drawing attention of some risk-seeking lenders, who have also dipped their toes in shipping.
There are five risks that should be taken into considerations for players who will remain in shipping.
- Rising LIBOR
- Higher bunker fuel prices
- Inept management
- New banking regulations
- China’s debt
More details: https://www.ft.com/shipping
China to expand ECA to cover all territorial waters
Chinese government has proposed a plan to make the entire territorial waters subject to a 0.5% sulphur cap from January 1, 2019, which will be 12 months ahead of the IMO’s deadline. The draft plan is expected to be announced early July for public review, said an official at the Green Port & Shipping International Conference in Shenzhen.
Georgia and South Carolina chassis pool aims to cut costs
South Carolina Ports Authority chief executive Jim Newsome has set out the reasons behind the port’s proposed new chassis pool agreement in a statement calling for stakeholders to file comments on the proposal with the Federal Maritime Commission.
This pool will be operated by the North America Chassis Pool Cooperative, a trucker-centric organization that has focused on improving the quality of chassis on an at-cost basis.
The agreement aims to improve the quality of the chassis fleet in the southeast through setting standards in terms of age and attributes, such as radial tires, LED lights and anti-lock brakes.