Headlines: UN Security Council – resolution adopted condemning piracy; Indian Ocean – chemical tanker evades pirate attack; USCG – transiting areas where piracy is prevalent; FBI – five Somalis convicted of piracy; BOEMRE – OSC renewable energy leases; NOAA – MSD discharge prohibition for FKNMS; DRBOSAC – meeting; Alaska – critical habitat for polar bear; Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 – Pub.L. 111-281; House – bill introduced to aid recovery from oil spill; Pennsylvania - $1.3 million for natural resource damages; IMO – preparations for Cancun climate change conference; Bonn Agreement – Action Plan and Declaration; EC – nationality of master or chief mate on Greek ships; Australia – report on Montara well oil spill; India – danger areas for satellite launch; Singapore – LRIT conformance testing and certification; UK – report on stores crane failure; UK – report on lifting equipment failure; UK – safety flyer re lifting appliances; and Australia’s first major oil spill – November 28, 1903.
November 29, 2010
Bryant’s Maritime Blog
Bryant’s Maritime Consulting - 4845 SW 91st Way - Gainesville, FL 32608-8135 - USA
Note: This blog is one section of the Bryant’s Maritime Consulting website. Visit the site for more extensive maritime regulatory information. Individual concerns may be addressed by retaining Dennis Bryant directly. Much of the highlighted text in this newsletter constitutes links to Internet sites providing more detailed information. Links on this page may be in PDF format, requiring use of Adobe Acrobat Reader. Comments on these postings are encouraged and may be made by clicking the envelope that appears at the end of each posting. Be aware that the daily blog entry is a single posting, even though it contains a number of individual items. He who is lost, hesitates.
UN Security Council – resolution adopted condemning piracy
The United Nations Security Council issued a resolution reiterating its condemnation of all acts of piracy and armed robbery against vessels in waters off the coast of Somalia. It commended the efforts of the EU, NATO, the Combined Maritime Forces, and numerous individual nations in deploying naval forces in the region to combat this scourge. It also commended Kenya and Seychelles for prosecuting suspected pirates. It calls on Member States to assist Somalia with nation-building and to criminalize piracy under their domestic law. Resolution 1950 (2010) (11/23/10). Note: This resolution basically updates and reiterates the prior resolutions on this topic.
Indian Ocean – chemical tanker evades pirate attack
The EU NAVFOR issued a press release stating that the chemical tanker Norna N came under attack by pirates in the Indian Ocean approximately 700 nautical miles east of Socotra Island. The vessel was fired on by small arms and RPG. The master conducted evasive maneuvers and activated other self-protection measures (high-pressure fire hoses and barbed wire obstacles). The pirates aborted the attack. (11/24/10).
USCG – transiting areas where piracy is prevalent
The US Coast Guard updated its advisory regarding security measures for ships transiting or operating in areas where acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea are prevalent. Changes from the previous version are minimal. Emphasis has been added to measures to be taken if the ship is anchored or berthed in high risk waters. Port Security Advisory (2-09)(Rev 2) (11/23/10).
FBI – five Somalis convicted of piracy
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued a press release stating that five Somalis have been convicted of engaging in engaging in piracy and related offenses in their attack on the Navy frigate USS Nicholas on April 1, 2010 in the Indian Ocean. The attack took place at night when the Somalis fired on what they thought was a merchant vessel. The frigate immediately returned fire and captured the Somalis, who were brought to Norfolk, Virginia for trial. This is believed to be the first piracy trial conviction in the United States since 1820. Sentencing is scheduled for March 14, 2011. Conviction for piracy carries a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment. (11/24/10).
BOEMRE – OCS renewable energy leases
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement (BOEMRE) issued a direct final rule revising regulations that pertain to noncompetitive acquisition of an outer continental shelf (OCS) renewable energy lease. The revision comes into effect on January 25, 2011. Comments on the revision should be submitted by December 27, 2010. 75 Fed. Reg. 72679 (November 26, 2010). Note: This action was announced in a press release issued by the Department of the Interior (DOI).
NOAA – MSD discharge prohibition for FKNMS
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issued a final rule prohibiting discharges from marine sanitation devices (MSDs) from vessels operating in waters of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (FKNMS). The rule comes into effect on December 27. 75 Fed. Reg. 72655 (November 26, 2010).
DRBOSAC – meeting
The Delaware River and Bay Oil Spill Advisory Committee (DRBOSAC), sponsored by the US Coast Guard, will meet on December 16 and 17 in Philadelphia. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss and approve DRBOSAC’s report on oil spill prevention and removal strategies. 75 Fed. Reg. 73116 (November 29, 2010).
Alaska – critical habitat for polar bear
The Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) issued a press release stating that it is issuing a final rule that will designate more than 187,000 square miles of on-shore barrier islands, denning areas, and offshore sea-ice in Alaska as critical habitat for the polar bear (a threatened species) in accordance with the Endangered Species Act. The designation does not affect land ownership and does not include existing manmade structures. It does, though, encompass areas where oil and gas exploration activities are known to occur. Such activities can only be authorized within a critical habitat if they are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of the species or to destroy or adverse modify its critical habitat. The final rule will be promulgated in the Federal Register in the near future. (11/24/10).
Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 – Pub.L. 111-281
The Government Printing Office (GPO) posted Public Law 111-281. This is the official version of the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010, which was enacted into law on October 15, 2010. (11/24/10).
House – bill introduced to aid recovery from oil spill
Representative Castor (D-FL) introduced the Gulf of Mexico Economic and Environmental Restoration Act of 2010 (H.R. 6434) to establish programs to aid in the economic, environmental, and public health recovery of the Gulf States from the damage and harm caused by the blowout of the mobile offshore drilling unit Deepwater Horizon and the resulting degradation of the Gulf over time, and for other purposes. (11/18/10).
Pennsylvania – $1.3 million for natural resource damages
The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission issued a news release stating that it will receive approximately $1.3 million to restore habitat on a Delaware tributary. The monies, from the USCG Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund (OSLTF) are intended to compensate for natural resources damaged by the 2004 oil spill in the Delaware River from the tanker Athos I. (11/24/10).
IMO – preparations for Cancun climate change conference
The IMO issued a news release stating that it has circulated various documents to UN Member States in advance of the Cancun climate change conference (COP 16/CMP 6). The documents include: (1) a Note on technical, operational, and market-based measures to reduce emissions from ships engaged in international voyages; (2) a Note on greenhouse-gas emissions from ships; (3) a Note on carbon capture/storage and ocean fertilization; and (4) a Position Note regarding control of greenhouse-gas emissions from ships. (11/26/10).
Bonn Agreement – Action Plan and Declaration
The Bonn Agreement for Cooperation in Dealing with Pollution of the North Sea by Oil and Other Harmful Substances, 1983 met in Dublin and adopted the Bonn Agreement Action Plan 2010-2013 (BAAP). The BAAP is a strategy for improving the protection of the coastal and marine environment against pollution from shipping, offshore oil and gas operations, and other maritime activities. The BAAP calls for concrete actions on aerial and satellite surveillance, capabilities for pollution response, enforcement of environmental rules and standards, and programs for research and development. It was accompanied by the Declaration of the Ministerial Meeting (Dublin Declaration) affirming the political commitments called for to implement the BAAP. (11/24/10). Note: The Bonn Agreement covers waters of the Greater North Sea and its Approaches. Members consist of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the European Union.
EC – nationality of master or chief mate on Greek ships
The European Commission (EC) issued a press release stating that it has decided to ask Greece for information on measures taken to comply with a 2009 EU Court of Justice ruling on access of non-Greek citizens to the post of master or chief mate on ships flying the Greek flag. (11/24/10).
Australia – report on Montara well oil spill
The Australian Government posted the Report of the Montara Commission., as well as the Government Response to the Commission’s Report. The Honorable Martin Ferguson, Minister for Resources and Energy posted a Ministerial Statement on the release of the report. The media release states that the root cause of the casualty was the failure of both the operator and the regulator to adhere to Australia’s offshore safety regime. (11/24/10). Note: As Yogi Berra said, considering the Gulf of Mexico oil spill: “This is déjà vu all over again.”
India – danger areas for satellite launch
The Indian Department of Space issued a Range Clearance Memorandum advising that it intends to launch a geosynchronous satellite from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre SHAR, Sriharikota between December 12, 2010 and January 9, 2011. The exact date and launch time will be announced shortly beforehand. Danger areas related to the planned launch are identified in the memorandum. Ships should take note of the danger areas and timings and adjust voyage planning accordingly. (10/26/10).
Singapore – LRIT conformance testing and certification
The Singapore Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) issued a circular providing owners and operators of Singapore ships with updated information regarding conformance testing and certification of the Long Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT) systems for those ships. Shipping Circular 19/2010 (11/22/10).
UK – report on stores crane failure
The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued the report of its investigation of the failure of the stores crane on a dredger on the River Thames on 29 January 2010. The trolley from the vessel’s gantry-type stores crane detached and fell, landing on the deck guardrails. It narrowly missed seven people working nearby. The failure was due to a combination of design flaws, lack of maintenance, and weaknesses in the methods used for inspection and testing to assess the safety of the crane. Report 16/2010 (11/25/10).
UK – report on lifting equipment failure
The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued the report of its investigation of a lifting equipment failure on board a floating sheerleg in Southampton on 7 March 2010. The vessel’s ‘A’ frame was being lifted into position when it collapsed onto the damage, causing substantial damage, but no injuries. Investigation revealed that the deck fitting failed when it was overloaded by the uncoordinated use of winches. The lifting operation had been interrupted and the master’s concentration was broken by the arrival of the vessel’s commercial agent. No risk assessment had been carried out regarding the lifting operation and no written procedures had been provided. Report 15/2010 (11/25/10).
UK – safety flyer re lifting appliances
The UK Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) issued a Safety Flyer regarding non-cargo-handling lifting appliances. The flyer discusses a number of recent accidents and provides various safety lessons. (11/25/10).
Australia’s first major oil spill – November 28, 1903
The first recorded major oil spill in Australia (1,300 tons) occurred on November 28, 1903 when the tanker Petriana grounded on Portsea Back Beach in Port Phillip Bay. The tanker was carrying 1,330 tons of bulk oil from Borneo to Melbourne, as well as an unrecorded quantity of naphtha and benzene. The pilot decided to bring the ship into port in poor visibility, expecting the fog to lift before the ship reached the notorious Rip at the bay’s entrance. The fog did not lift and the ship grounded hard. When salvage attempts failed, the bulk oil was pumped overboard to lighten the ship. This too failed and the wreck was finally abandoned. Illustrating how times have changed, the press reports of the oil jettison described “a film of great beauty, radiating all the colours of the rainbow.” There were also difficulties when the crew of Chinese and Malay descent abandoned the ship. They were prohibited from landing ashore by Australian law of that era.
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 – November 2010