February 26, 2009
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USCG – meeting re MARPOL reception facilities
The US Coast Guard issued a notice stating that it is seeking comments and recommendations for optimizing ship waste reception facilities in domestic ports as required by the MARPOL Convention. A public meeting will be held on this issue in Washington, DC on March 12. Written comments and recommendations are also welcome. 74 Fed. Reg. 8807 (February 26, 2009).
USCG – ISO questions re the State of the Coast Guard
In preparation for the State of the Coast Guard address on March 3, Admiral Thad Allen is in search of questions from stakeholders. Relevant questions will identify areas of particular interest and will help shape the content of the address. (2/25/09).
USCG – 2009 Lights Lists released
The US Coast Guard released the 2009 Lights Lists, which contain lists of lights, sound signals, buoys, daybeacons, and other federal aids to navigation. (2/25/09).
New York – safety zone around entangled whale
The US Coast Guard issued a press release stating that it established a safety zone around a humpback whale that is entangled in a lobster pot and netting eight miles east of Sandy Hook near the approach to Ambrose Channel. An entanglement team is en route. (2/25/09).
Pacific Northwest – TWIC reminder
The US Coast Guard issued a press release reminding the maritime community that enforcement of the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) requirements will commence on February 28 at regulated facilities in the Pacific Northwest. (2/25/09).
Hearing – DHS: The Path Forward
The House Committee on Homeland Security conducted a hearing entitled: DHS: The Path Forward. Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) made an opening statement expressing concern regarding challenges facing the Department. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano summarized her plans for unifying the Department and, among other things, stated that a recent review of transportation security identified a number of areas where risks can be reduced. (2/25/09).
Bill introduced to provide for enhanced State authority for coastal resources
Representative Scalise (R-LA) introduced the Grow American Supply Act (H.R. 1108) to provide for State enhanced authority for coastal and ocean resources, expansion of America's supply of natural gas and oil, and for other purposes. If enacted into law, this bill would, among other things, increase the authority of adjacent coastal states over oil and gas drilling on the outer continental shelf (OCS) and increase revenue-sharing with coastal states for such activity. (2/23/09).
Bill introduced re offshore oil and gas development
Representative Poe (R-TX) introduced a bill (H.R. 1143) to achieve greater national energy independence by limiting presidential withdrawals of offshore lands from disposition for exploration, development, or production of oil and gas, to authorize States to petition for authorization to conduct offshore oil and natural gas exploration and extraction in any area that is within 50 miles of the coastline of the State and within the seaward lateral boundaries of the State extended, to share offshore oil and gas revenues with States, and for other purposes. (2/24/09).
Bill introduced re maritime mobile biometric identification
Representative Bilirakis (R-FL) introduced a bill (H.R. 1148) to require the Secretary of Homeland Security to conduct a program in the maritime environment for the mobile biometric identification of suspected individuals, including terrorists, to enhance border security. (2/24/09).
IMO – Document of Compliance re carriage of dangerous goods
The IMO issued a circular forwarding a sample Document of Compliance relating to the special requirements for ships carrying dangerous goods under the provisions of regulation II-2/19 of the 1974 SOLAS Convention, as amended, and of paragraph 7.17 of the 2000 HSC Code, as amended. MSC.1/Circ.1266 (12/18/09).
IMO – unified interpretation of MARPOL Annex VI - correction
The IMO issued a circular containing a correction to a unified interpretation of MARPOL Annex VI relating to sulphur limits and fuel oil verification procedure. MEPC.1/Circ.614/Corr.1 (1/5/09).
IMO – halon banking and reception facilities
The IMO issued a circular forwarding an updated list of halon banking and reception facilities. FP.1/Circ.37 (1/3/09).
UNCTAD – Maritime Transport and the Climate Change Challenge
The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) recently completed an Expert Meeting on Maritime Transport and the Climate Change Challenge. The maritime sector has a role to play in addressing climate change. At the same time, the industry must understand the effects of climate change and its implications for maritime transport (including, but not limited to, the possibility of more severe storms and a reduction in the ice-coverage in polar regions). (2/18/09).
EC – change to Irish tonnage tax approved
The European Commission (EC) issued a press release stating that it decided to authorize an amendment of the Irish tonnage tax related to time charter rules. (2/25/09).
New Zealand – Antarctic tourism reforms urged
The New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a news release announcing an international conference in New Zealand later this year on Antarctic ship-borne tourism. Foreign Minister Murray McCully cited a spate of recent casualties as highlighting the need for stricter controls in the Southern Ocean. (2/19/09).
UK – report on engine room fire
The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued the summary of its Preliminary Examination of the engine room fire on a cargo vessel in the approaches to Humber estuary on 6 February 2009. The fire started when a fracture in a low pressure fuel sensing pipe connection allowed fuel to spray onto an unguarded engine exhaust drain cock. The crew promptly closed the engine room vents and activated the fixed CO2 fire-fighting system. Note: The rapid completion of the examination and release of the summary should serve as an example of how to handle a straight-forward marine casualty examination and share lessons learned with the maritime community. (2/25/09).
If you have questions regarding the above items, please contact the editor:
Dennis L. Bryant
Bryant’s Maritime Blog
4845 SW 91st Way
Gainesville, FL 32608-8135