World Maritime News
AAPA statement in response to President Trump’s 2019 State of the Union Address
President Trump called “for a great rebuilding of America’s crumbling infrastructure,” for securing America’s border and international ports of entry, including those at seaports.
Kurt Nagle, AAPA’s president and CEO remarked “We are pleased to hear one of the President’s priorities is to improve the nation’s decaying infrastructure. AAPA looks forward with great anticipation to an infrastructure package this year that focuses on America’s transportation investment needs, including land and waterside connection to ports. We are also hopeful for legislation that includes AAPA’s long-term funding solution to end the decades old dilemma of Harbor Maintenance Tax underspending and inequitable funds distribution. Further to AAPA’s infrastructure report 2018, the 2019 infrastructure report “The State of Freight IV” identified nearly USD 4 billion port security funding needs over the next decade.
Smarter ports can help cut emissions
Port development has been identified as one of the key areas tied to the IMO’s greenhouse gas strategy, but more work needs to be done to bring together the various actors in the supply chain if the available improvements are to be realized, according to IMO project officer Anton Rhodes at the Smart Ports Summit in London. He said “There has to be a holistic approach and the inclusion of ports is absolutely key to our long-term goals.”
Ports are important for the IMO’s climate strategy because the potential for greenhouse gas reductions is considerable in terms of improving port operations and optimizing infrastructure. The existing port call process needs to be changed, sharing information.
Ports welcome European Maritime Single Window agreement
Major shipowner and port interests have come out in support of a framework to establish a maritime single window that will allow harmonization of reporting procedures across the European Union. On February 7 representatives of the European Parliament and Council provisionally agreed on a text establishing the European Maritime Single Window (EMSW) environment. It will replace the current Reporting Formalities Directives, which sought to harmonize port reporting requirements within each EU member state, through so-called National Maritime Windows. The European Sea Ports Organisation said the agreement was a breakthrough that reduces the administrative burden and harmonizes national single windows. The EMSW will come into effect six years after it is officially adopted.
Global scrubber rules discussions at the next MEPC meeting in May 2019
The European Union will push for global deliberations to be held on the rules regarding the discharge of waste water, taking into account environmental considerations and regional restrictions, in moves that will add another level of complexity to the ongoing debate around open-loop scrubbers. EU asks the IMO to develop a set of harmonized rules on the areas and conditions under which scrubbers can discharge. This EU call has received mixed reactions from leading shipping interests.
A study commissioned by Panama into the use of open-loop scrubbers carried out by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has been submitted to the IMO.
The MIT research involved “an extensive literature review” that compared seven previous studies on the environmental impact of marine scrubbers from Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, the US and internationally. There was “an almost complete consensus” that there was cause for concern about pollutants contained in scrubber discharge, the study found.
While scrubbers were effective for gaseous, Sulphur oxides, the study noted that scrubbers may not be as efficient in removing small particulates that are harmful to human health.
The findings are very different in emphasis to those of a new Japanese government study being presented to the IMO this week. Japanese study found open-loop scrubbers should not be prohibited because there are no “unacceptable” effects on the marine organisms and the quality of the sea from their use. The study showed that after 10 years there was no material change found to the accumulated concentration of components such as pH, nitrate and chemical oxygen demand, even in the scenario in which all vessels in those regions use scrubbers. Japan’s study found that the amount of heavy metals in the sea emanating from open-loop scrubber use is about 100 times less than the limit of heavy metal concentration permitted from land discharges in Japan.
The proposals will be discussed during an environmental meeting in mid-May.
Mediterranean Ports strategy
The port of Piraeus and the ports of the North Adriatic Sea Port Authority, Venice and Chioggia, have signed a pact that outlines greater co-operation between the respective hubs in the light of fast-developing trade from the Far East. The memorandum of agreement signed on February 11 comes in the wake of the launch of last November of a weekly container feeder service between Piraeus and Venice operated by Cosco Shipping, adding to its network of feedering links with other Mediterranean ports. The new co-operation initiative aims to improve performance and connectivity in Piraeus and Venice to support increased trade between the Far East and Europe through the Mediterranean.
In the meantime, the port of Marseille Fos is seeking to build its intermodal links to position itself as a southern gateway to Europe through a partnership agreement with the French river port of Strasbourg. Marseille Fos, which has a throughput of 1.4 million teu a year, aims to be an alternative to Europe’s congested northern range ports. Strasbourg, on the Rhine, is Europe’s second-largest river port and has a container throughput of more than 420,000 teu per year. Its core objectives will be development of rail traffic, co-operation on operational strategy, commercial promotion and research and innovation on issue such as supply chain performance and the environment.
Official inauguration ceremony of the expanded and deepened Vridi Canal Abidjan
Since 2012, the Abidjan Port Authority has undertaken extensive upgrading and rehabilitation works of infrastructure with a view to consolidating its sub-regional leading position as a Hub port on the Atlantic Coast of Africa. The projects include the widening and deepening works of Vridi Canal. The works which were carried out by China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) reached completion in December 2018. The widened and deepened Vridi Canal enables Abidjan Port to accommodate new generation vessels.
BP sees global LNG trade doubling by 2040
Global trades of LNG could more than double between 2017 and 2040, driven by countries switching to cleaner energy that emits less greenhouse gasses, according to BP.
Global LNG trades will grow to 900 billion m3 by 2040 from 400 billion m3 in 2017.
BP forecasts that as the LNG market matures, the US and Qatar will emerge as the main centers of LNG export, accounting for about 40% of all LNG exports by 2040.
Meanwhile Asia remains the dominant market for LNG imports.
Source: BP Energy Outlook 2019