Headlines: US Supreme Court – declines to hear Asian carp dispute; Gulf of Aden – non-lethal measures used to deter pirates; Shipping Coordinating Committee meeting; NOAA – meetings re Cook Inlet beluga whale critical habitat; IMO – prohibition against anchoring in Straits of Malacca and Singapore; IMO – routing measures off Gotland Island; IMO – minimum safe depth in South Aland Sea TSS; and Ireland – debris from lost containers washing ashore.
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US Supreme Court – declines to hear Asian carp dispute
The Supreme Court of the United States has denied, without explanation, the motion of the State of Michigan for a preliminary injunction to require the State of Illinois and the US Army Corps of Engineers to close the locks and related facilities connecting the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal with Lake Michigan. The concern expressed by Michigan, which was joined by other states bordering the Great Lakes and by the Province of Ontario, was that the invasive Asian carp would otherwise enter the Lakes and devastate the native fish species. Orders List (1/19/10). The Michigan Attorney General issued a news release stating that he is disappointed with the ruling, but will continue efforts to close the locks on the Canal. (1/19/10). Note: Closure of the Canal would have a noticeable adverse impact on maritime commerce between the Great Lakes and the Illinois/Mississippi River basin, and on the businesses that rely on that transportation link.
Gulf of Aden – non-lethal measures used to deter pirates
The US Navy issued a news release stating that a merchant vessel that came under piratical attack was able to deter the pirates through use of evasive maneuvers and the firing of flares by the embarked security team. The Navy encourages preparation, vigilance, and the use of non-lethal defensive measures. (1/19/10).
Shipping Coordinating Committee – meeting
The Shipping Coordinating Committee, sponsored by the US Department of State, will meet in Washington, DC on February 2. The purpose of the meeting is to prepare for the upcoming session of the IMO Subcommittee on Bulk Liquids and Gases. Topics on the agenda include carriage of biofuels; minimizing the transfer of invasive aquatic species through biofouling; and safety requirements for natural gas hydrate pellet carriers. 75 Fed. Reg. 3272 (January 20, 2010).
NOAA – meetings re Cook Inlet beluga whale critical habitat
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a notice stating that meetings to receive public comments on proposed critical habitat for the Cook Inlet beluga whale will be held in Soldotna (February 3); Homer (February 4); Wasilla (February 11); and Anchorage (February 12). 75 Fed. Reg. 3191 (January 20, 2010).
IMO – prohibition against anchoring in Straits of Malacca and Singapore
The IMO issued a circular reminding the maritime community not to anchor in all areas of the traffic separation scheme (TSS) of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore, as well as between the landward limits of the TSS and approaches to the ports. SN.1/Circ.282 (11/27/09).
IMO – routing measures off Gotland Island
The IMO issued a circular advising mariners of planned construction of the Nord Stream pipeline system through portions of the existing deep-water route off Gotland Island. The pipeline installation is scheduled to occur during 2010-2012. SN.1/Circ.250/Add.1 (11/27/09).
IMO – minimum safe depth in South Aland Sea TSS
The IMO issued a circular advising that the minimum depth of the deep-water route of the “South Aland Sea” traffic separation scheme (TSS) has been reduced from 18.0 meters to 17.9 meters. This change is based on the recent discovery of a shoal in those waters. SN.1/Circ.272/Add.2 (11/12/09).
Ireland – debris from lost containers washing ashore
The Irish Coast Guard issued a press release urging the public to stay clear of debris that has begun washing ashore from shipping containers that were lost overboard from a small cargo vessel that encountered heavy weather. (1/16/10).
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 – January 2010