August 2018

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IMO’s bold blueprint for shipping: Cut carbon emissions 50 percent by 2050

IMO’s bold blueprint for shipping: Cut carbon emissions 50 percent by 2050

The global shipping industry plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent over the next several decades as a step toward phasing them out entirely, according to a new strategy adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

Industry braces for higher fuel costs under new IMO sulfur cap

With the 2020 deadline looming for the International Maritime Organization’s 0.5 percent sulfur fuel cap, vessel operators are facing uncertain financial and practical implications.

US budget includes $300 million for new SUNY Maritime training ship

US budget includes $300 million for new SUNY Maritime training ship

The fiscal year 2018 budget enacted by Congress in March includes $300 million for construction of a new training ship for the State University of New York (SUNY) Maritime College, as well as $22 million for maintenance and repair of the rest of the nation’s aging academy fleet.

Panama Canal tug captains face dismissal in dispute over crewing

Panama Canal tug captains face dismissal in dispute over crewing

Why would the Panama Canal Authority (PCA) trigger a dispute with its tugboat captains by eliminating the position of one deck hand per tug who earns $9 an hour?

Senate blocks bill to end ‘patchwork’ of ballast water discharge rules

Senate blocks bill to end ‘patchwork’ of ballast water discharge rules

When the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Coast Guard and 25 states all regulate ballast water discharges, it leads to chaos, according to organizations representing commercial shipping interests.

Study: No provable link between EALs, stern tube bearing failures

Study: No provable link between EALs, stern tube bearing failures

A study conducted to better understand the impact of environmentally acceptable lubricants (EALs) on stern tube bearings did not find definitive evidence that they were responsible for recently reported increases in bearing failures.

Bunker fuel contamination affects dozens of vessels on Gulf Coast

Bunker fuel contamination affects dozens of vessels on Gulf Coast

Dozens of ships have experienced fuel system problems after using bunkering fuel from Houston-area suppliers, and at least one company believes the contamination stems from issues at one or more refineries.

First COIs issued as Coast Guard tracks Subchapter M compliance

First COIs issued as Coast Guard tracks Subchapter M compliance

U.S. Coast Guard inspections for Subchapter M, the new regulations governing the towing industry, began well before the July 20 compliance deadline as many operators sought to get a jump on a process marked by years of uncertainty.

Polar Star shows its age as US awaits more icebreaking power

Polar Star shows its age as US awaits more icebreaking power

Residents of an ice-bound research facility in Antarctica count on containerships full of crucial supplies like food and fuel being able to get through to them once a year.

At a glance: USCGC Polar Star

Brawny Crescent z-drive takes on all comers in Big Easy

Brawny Crescent z-drive takes on all comers in Big Easy

On an overcast day last November, the bright yellow Crescent Towing tugs Mardi Gras and South Carolina, bows bibbed for Navy work, lent color to the metal gray day.

Ship’s second officer killed by spring line that released under tension

Ship’s second officer killed by spring line that released under tension

The second officer on a bulk carrier was fatally injured in a mooring accident in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, when a spring line caught under a rubber fender at the dock, sprung loose and struck him under the chin.

NTSB: Pilot underestimated current in Kentucky towboat sinking

A towboat that sank last year in the Mississippi River near Columbus, Ky., was handling a string of barges when it lost control in the strong current and became pinned against a downriver barge fleet.

15 coal barges break from Monongahela fleeting area, two sink

15 coal barges break from Monongahela fleeting area, two sink

Fifteen loaded coal barges broke free from a fleeting area on the Monongahela River east of Pittsburgh, Pa., and two later sank.

TSB cites clutch failure, manning violations in Nova Scotia grounding

TSB cites clutch failure, manning violations in Nova Scotia grounding

The failure of a propulsion clutch on a self-propelled bunker barge en route from Quebec to Mexico was a leading factor in its grounding early last year off Nova Scotia, Canadian officials said in a recent report.

Engine room fire leads to injuries, barge breakaway in New Orleans

Engine room fire leads to injuries, barge breakaway in New Orleans

A towboat pushing six barges caught fire while underway in the Mississippi River in New Orleans and burned for more than two hours.

Seaway tanker grounds after steering failure; water raised to free it

The loaded tanker Chem Norma ran aground in the St. Lawrence River following an unspecified steering system failure and remained stuck for five days.

Casualty briefs

Casualty briefs

‘Big data’ opening new world of opportunity for maritime operators

‘Big data’ opening new world of opportunity for maritime operators

“Big data” is a buzz phrase from the information technology world that is starting to crop up in maritime circles, too.

Ultrasound gains favor when testing seals for watertight integrity

Ultrasound gains favor when testing seals for watertight integrity

A lack of proper servicing of seals can lead to deterioration that can endanger the crew, vessel and cargo.

‘Regulatory reform’ first shot in new attack on US maritime industry

Imagine this scenario: Our ports are filled with Bolivian- and Cypriot-registered ships running U.S. domestic coastwise cargo, many of them “rust buckets” crewed by minimally trained mariners and operated by unscrupulous vessel owners.