Headlines: Russia – crew of MV Arctic Sea liberated; NATO – counter-piracy mission receives enhanced mandate; Elliott Bay – security and safety zone; Panama Canal – Notice to commence work; Panama Canal – reminder re minimum visibility information; DOC – stimulus funding for hydrographic surveys; OGMSA – Global Maritime Information Sharing Symposium; Middlesex County, Virginia – “no discharge” zone; and FERC & Maine – MOU re hydrokinetics projects.
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Russia – crew of MV Arctic Sea liberated
The President of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev, issued a news release stating that the Russian crew of the MV Arctic Sea has been liberated. Eight people of Estonian, Latvian, and Russian nationality were arrested. Investigations revealed that on July 24 these people boarded the Arctic Sea and, using the threat of arms, demanded that the crew change course. Then the Arctic Sea sailed on to an African route indicated by the aggressors and turned off its navigation equipment. (8/18/09).
NATO – counter-piracy mission receives enhanced mandate
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) issued a news release stating that the North Atlantic Council (NAC) approved Operation Ocean Shield. The new mission builds on current counter-piracy efforts of Operation Allied Protector by adding regional state counter-piracy capacity building. (8/18/09).
Elliott Bay – security and safety zone
The US Coast Guard has established a security and safety zone on certain waters of Elliott Bay, including waters adjacent to Pier 91 in the Port of Seattle. The purpose is to protect large passenger cruise vessels operating on those waters and small vessels in their vicinity. The security and safety zone will only be enforced when a large passenger cruise vessel is underway on those waters. Comments on the interim rule should be submitted by October 5. 74 Fed. Reg. 42026 (August 20, 2009).
Panama Canal – Notice to commence work
The Panama Canal Authority issued a press release stating that it issued the Notice to Commence Work to Grupo Unidos por el Canal. The scope of work included in the contract encompasses the design and construction of the Canal’s new set of locks and water-saving basins on both the Pacific and Atlantic ends of the Canal. Work will start on August 25. (8/18/09).
Panama Canal – reminder re minimum visibility information
The Panama Canal Authority issued a reminder notifying Canal users that the standardized Pre-Arrival Vessel Information form mentioned in the earlier advisory is available at Customer Forms under the name “Pre-arrival Vessel’s Information-Visibility Requirements”. Advisory 14-2009 (Revision 1) (8/18/09).
DOC – stimulus funding for hydrographic surveys
The Secretary of Commerce, Gary Locke, will hold a press conference in Norfolk on August 20 to announce awards totaling $31 million in contracts for hydrographic surveys funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The surveys will support nautical charts in eight critical coastal areas in Chesapeake Bay and in coastal waters of Alaska, Washington, California, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, and Virginia. (8/19/09).
OGMSA – Global Maritime Information Sharing Symposium
The Office of Global Maritime Situational Awareness (OGMSA) is sponsoring the Global Maritime Information Sharing Symposium 2009 (GMISS) to be held in Washington, DC on September 15-17. The theme of this year’s symposium is: “Streamlining Information Sharing: Improving Efficiency, Security, Safety and the Environment”. The goal is to bring together senior representatives of the public and private sectors to collaborate and deliver more efficient information sharing so as to improve operating efficiency and enhance maritime safety and security. Prospective attendees may register at the GMISS 2009 internet site. (8/19/09).
Middlesex County, Virginia – “no discharge” zone
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice stating that it has determined that adequate facilities for the safe and sanitary removal and treatment of sewage from all vessels are reasonably available for the navigable waters of the Broad Creek, Jackson Creek, and Fishing Bay Watersheds in Middlesex County, Virginia. 74 Fed. Reg. 42070 (August 20, 2009).
FERC and Maine – MOU re hydrokinetics projects
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a news release stating that it and the State of Maine signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to coordinate procedures and schedules for review of tidal energy (hydrokinetics) projects off the coast of Maine. While this is the first such agreement on the East Coast, FERC has entered into similar arrangements with the States of Washington and Oregon. (8/19/09).
If you have questions regarding the above items, please contact the editor:
Dennis L. Bryant
Bryant’s Maritime Consulting
4845 SW 91st Way
Gainesville, FL 32608-8135
© Dennis L. Bryant – August 2009