OPINION “We take this very seriously” must be among the most overused platitudes of government and corporate PR machines – how does it apply to GHG emissions?

By Theo van de Kletersteeg

With carbon taxes and concern over climate change once again in the limelight, I thought it might be opportune to update an article that was published in Canadian Sailings in November of 2017.

Scientists and green supporters have explained to us during the past decade or so that global temperature increases must be kept well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, if we wish to avoid the more egregious consequences of climate change. Accordingly, the 2015 Paris Agreement requires that signatories to the Agreement implement programmes to reduce national carbon emissions to levels that are thought to result in global temperatures to be kept in check, and to “pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C”, compared to the 0.9°C temperature rise that has taken place since 1870. (more…)

CN and CP announce Q4 and 2018 year-end results

2018 was a great year for both of Canada’s railways.

For the fourth quarter CN’s revenues were up 16 per cent, and for the year revenues were up by 9.9 per cent to a record $14.3 billion. Operating income rose during the fourth quarter to $1.45 billion from $1.3 billion, resulting in a gross margin of 38.8 per cent. For the year, CN’s operating income rose to $5.5 billion from $5.25 billion, resulting in a gross margin of 38.4 per cent. Net income before taxes for the year rose 11.6 per cent to a record $5.7 billion. Cash flow from operations increased by 7.3 per cent to $5.9 billion. “Free” cash flow, the amount remaining from operating cash flow after subtracting net capital expenditures made during the year and dividends paid to investors, decreased from $1.6 billion to $1.25 billion. (more…)

Ocean Group acquires Techsol Marine

Ocean Group has acquired Techsol Marine, a Quebec-based specialist in electro-mechanical marine systems. Techsol designs, installs and commissions automation systems used to monitor and control machinery on ships operating on all kinds of ships around the world. Its installed base represents more than 400 vessels operating worldwide. The acquisition, which complements Ocean Group’s existing expertise, will allow Ocean Group to expand its operations in Canada and to continue its global expansion.

“We are pleased to contribute to the development of this company with a real know-how, while bringing back the ownership of the company in Quebec. We are convinced of the great potential of Techsol Marine and want to invest in growing its market share in Quebec, Canada and internationally”, said Jacques Tanguay, President and CEO of Ocean Group.

Techsol Marine designs, produces, installs and commissions integrated ship automation and control systems, electrical distribution systems, and integrated propulsion systems. Until its acquisition by Ocean Group, Techsol was owned by RH Marine B.V. of the Netherlands.

ZIM partners with Avantida to offer street turn services in the U.S.

Avantida, headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, announced that ZIM has partnered with it to offer street turn services in the United States through Avantida’s platform that facilitates services offered by ocean lines to transport and logistic companies for optimized container transport planning. ZIM is joining Maersk to offer this service to U.S. transporters. Maersk introduced the Avantida platform to the U.S. and Canada last month.

Avantida’s platform facilitates empty container triangulation, or the reuse of an import container for an export booking (street turn). The process offered by ZIM not only provides dispatchers and planners requesting street turns with an accurate, reliable response, it also reduces time, transport costs and CO2 emissions as truck miles are reduced. (more…)

Halterm Container Terminal orders additional equipment to strengthen its Halifax capabilities

Halterm Container Terminal has announced it has acquired a ZPMC Super Post-Panamax ship-to-shore container gantry crane and associated lifting equipment, together with container yard equipment, including two Rubber-Tired Gantry Cranes and nine Terminal Tractors and Trailers, with an option to extend procurement to a further Ship-to-Shore crane in 2019.

The new Super Post-Panamax ship-to-shore crane, due to arrive June 2020, will offer enhanced outreach (24-wide) and height, capable of spanning the largest vessels being deployed on North America’s east coast and will be added to Halterm’s main berth alongside four existing Super Post-Panamax units and one Panamax unit. (more…)

Chamber of Marine Commerce comments on new government measures to protect whales

Bruce Burrows, President to the Chamber of Marine Commerce, said: “We are pleased that the government has made some refinements to this year’s mitigation measures that will continue to protect the endangered right whales and at the same time increase the efficiency of deliveries of supplies to the surrounding communities that depend on marine transport. The changes will allow ships to travel without speed restrictions in two additional shipping areas, but only if surveillance continues to show that no whales are present.” (more…)

Chamber of Marine Commerce agenda for 2019

Chamber of Marine Commerce (CMC)          President Bruce Burrows unveiled a 2019 wish list for legislative and policymakers designed to make Great Lakes-St. Lawrence and coastal shipping more competitive and build on the remarkable growth of the 2018 season. St. Lawrence Seaway cargo volumes increased almost 7 per cent in 2018, reaching 40.9 million metric tonnes for the first time since 2007.

“Despite an unpredictable business environment of tariff wars and trade negotiations, many of our Canadian and U.S. port members reported increased volumes in grain exports, road salt, construction materials and petroleum products underlining the importance of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence waterway as a domestic and international trade gateway,” says Bruce Burrows, President of the Chamber of Marine Commerce.  “There is great opportunity in 2019 to build on this economic momentum and work with legislators and policymakers to make significant progress on shipping’s most enduring challenges.” (more…)

Opinion – We should insist that governments regain control over their finances

By Theo van de Kletersteeg

By now we all know that somewhere along the line, the Trudeau government decided to abandon its 2015 election campaign promise to balance the federal budget by the time voters go to the polls again in 2019. Instead, Liberals plan to continue their deficit spending and related borrowing, with Bill Morneau, our Finance Minister, saying that “Every responsible leader knows that a good plan has to be flexible enough to absorb the changes in circumstances because circumstances always change.” Really! With an economy that, to be sure, has its problems, but which nonetheless has produced ever-decreasing rates of unemployment and great corporate profits, the only “changes in circumstances” that I see are higher than anticipated revenues for the federal government and most provincial governments. So how could we go from a projected federal balanced budget to an $18.1 billion federal budget deficit that is now projected for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2019? And why is it that deficits are now projected “forever”? (more…)

Algoma Central announces resignation of CEO and names replacement

Algoma Central Corporation announced that Ken Bloch Soerensen has resigned as President and CEO to spend more time with his family in Europe. Gregg A. Ruhl, the current COO, has been named President and Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately.

Mr. Soerensen joined Algoma in April 2015 and was charged with redefining the strategic focus of the Company to include growth markets beyond North America. He led the development of the global short sea business and spearheaded the creation of the NovaAlgoma partnership. During his tenure, Algoma’s international business grew to represent nearly one half of the revenue streams in which the Company participates. (more…)

CMA CGM backs Agricool venture using recycled containers to enable urban agriculture

Founded in 2015 in Paris, Agricool aims to create urban farms in recycled containers. The junior company is in the process of testing several containers of hydroponically-grown produce. Its objective is to produce fruit and vegetables without pesticides, picked and sold on the same day.

In Paris, Agricool grows strawberries by saving 90 per cent of water and nutrients compared to conventional agricultural methods and uses renewable energy only. These strawberries contain an average of 20 per cent sugar and 30 per cent vitamin C, more than field-grown strawberries. In the Fall of 2018, CMA CGM Group provided its first concrete support to Agricool by offering technical and logistical support for the delivery and installation of a “cooltainer” in Dubai. (more…)

Port of Trois Rivières commits $2.5 million for environmental protection and innovation

As part of its On Course for 2030 objectives, Trois-Rivières Port Authority (TRPA) has established two investment funds totalling $2.5 million over five years.

TRPA’s Environment Fund aims to support users’ investments in solutions that will improve the Port’s environmental performance. Through this initiative, TRPA wishes to support the implementation of projects, and enable them to be carried out earlier. Shippers no longer choose a port solely on the basis of its productivity, but also judge on the basis of its environmental performance. Environmental protection and economic development go hand in hand!,” explains Gaétan Boivin, the Port’s President and CEO. (more…)

Port of Trois-Rivières welcomes its first ocean-going vessel of 2019

Ellensborg is the first ocean-going vessel port to directly reach the port of Trois-Rivières from an overseas point of departure in 2019. It reached the port on January 7, at 2:24 p.m., following a 25-day Atlantic voyage. The vessel, with its fifteen crew members of Thai nationality, left the port of Lüderitz in Namibia on Dec. 14, 2018 with a cargo of 11,000 tonnes of zinc unloaded by Somavrac, and destined for the CEZinc refinery in Valleyfield, Quebec. (more…)