Date: April 9, 2013
This week sees the shipping industry descend on Singapore for Sea Asia 2013, taking place at the Marina Bay Sands. Getting underway today as part of the renowned Singapore Maritime Week, this is one of the biggest dates in the shipping industry calendar, combining a busy conference schedule with exhibitions, national pavilions and plenty of opportunities for socialising. Over 14,000 maritime professionals are expected to attend, including the UK Hydrographic Office.
Date: February 15, 2013
From the fuel-efficiency benefits of shipping to ECDIS training and a guide to emergency response planning, here are a few of our favourite stories from the maritime world.
Study shows environmental benefits of Great Lakes shipping over land transport – A study conducted into the fuel efficiency of different modes of transport has shown the benefits of shipping. The study compared by the Research and Traffic Group compared the Great Lakes – St Lawrence Seaway shipping route with alternative road and rail transport routes. Using data from 2010, the results showed that the US and Canadian Great Lakes – St Lawrence Seaway fleet was 594 per cent more fuel efficient than truck transport and 14% more fuel efficient than rail transport. Put another way, marine vessels were able to carry cargo significantly further for the same amount of fuel. Shipping on this route also produced less greenhouse gases than either truck or rail transport, according to the study.
Date: February 8, 2013
From UK seafarer numbers to emissions monitoring systems and the role of electronic navigational data in accident investigations, here’s a selection of stories from the maritime world that have caught our eye this week.
Mixed news on UK seafarer numbers - Latest figures from the UK’s Ministry of Transport has revealed a mixed picture when it comes to seafarer numbers. The total number of UK officers and ratings fell by 10% last year, with an estimated 24,100 British seafarers active at sea. However, the number of officers cadets in training last year was 2,160, a 19% increase from 2011, with 903 new entrants started under the SMarT scheme in 2012. The SMartT (Support for Maritime Training) scheme provides financial assistance to shipping companies that provide merchant navy training, in order to support the UK maritime sector, which was recently valued at £32 billion in terms of its total contritbution to the British economy.
Date: January 31, 2013
The start of 2013 has brought with it a flurry of predictions and aspirations for the year ahead, reflecting both pessimism about the ongoing financial woes facing shipping companies, as well as a more optimist perspective on the opportunities that always emerge during times of change. We take a look at some of the key themes expected to dominate the shipping world during 2013.
Collaboration and consolidation in a tough market
Leading shipping bank DNB offered a few crumbs of comfort as the shipping industry entered its sixth year of downturn. It anticipates a recovery in bulk rates in 2013, led by slower growth in the size of the global bulk fleet, which will start to redress the problems of over-capacity. Chemical and product tanker sectors are also set to recover, according to DNB, but the crude tanker and container sectors are expected to remain flat during the year ahead.
In the face of such ongoing financial instability, Fairplay editor Richard Clayton calls for shipping to be returned to maritime friendly companies that truly care about keeping vessels safe and the oceans free from pollution. Whilst bank finance will be as hard to obtain as ever and market rates will continue to be determined by the surge in newbuild tonnage, he sees potential benefits from greater collaboration between shipping companies during 2013. Elsewhere, others argue that certain sectors, such as container shipping, will require not just co-operation, but true consolidation in order to restore market stability in the year ahead.
Date: November 23, 2012
From ECDIS familiarisation to awareness of impending SEEMP regulations, we’ve been keeping track of the news that reflect the important issues affecting the maritime industry. Here are a few stories from the past week.
ECDIS Familiarisation - representatives from across the maritime industry gathered in London this week for the ECDIS Revolution conference, which was sponsored by Admiralty. The importance of ECDIS familiarisation emerged as a critical theme from this two-day event. A cross-industry group, organised and coordinated by The Nautical Institute has produced a range of guidance to clarify the requirements for competency in relation to ECDIS. ECDIS Familiarisation is defined as the process required to become familiar with any onboard ECDIS (including back-up) in order to assure and demonstrate competency in relation to a specific ship’s ECDIS installation, prior to taking charge of a navigation watch. The guidance includes a series of recommendations and an ECDIS Familiarisation Checklist, covering Initial Preparation; Basic Operations; Charts; Navigational Tools and Functions; Route Planning and Route Monitoring.
Date: November 16, 2012
From Seafarers’ Welfare Awards to maritime social media, we’ve been keeping an eye on the industry’s most interesting stories from the past week. Here’s a quick selection:
2012 International Seafarers’ Welfare Awards shortlist announced – The International Committee on Seafarers’ Welfare announced the shortlist for its awards highlighting best practice in seafarers’ welfare. The Maritime Executive reported that the high-profile ceremony will be the finale of two days of events that also includes a seminar exploring the welfare aspects of the Maritime Labour Convention. To see those shortlisted for the awards that include ‘Seafarer Centre of the Year’ and ‘Welfare Personality of the Year’ categories visit www.seafarerswelfareawards.org.
Date: November 2, 2012
From green ports in China to the evolution of ECDIS we’ve been keeping an eye on the industry’s most interesting stories from the past week. Here’s a quick selection:
Developing green ports in China – Safety4Sea posted a video showing off China’s efforts to make its ports more ‘green’. Chongqing, a major city in Southwest China, has become the country’s leader in port productivity in the last few years. Energy saving processes and safety-orientated work practices have enabled the city to almost halve energy consumption of the city’s ships. Other cities are now taking note and following Chongqing’s example and turning to ‘green’ practices.
Date: October 30, 2012
We recently wrote about the World Hydrography Day celebrations and an accompanying debate about Generation Y that included input from the Trinity House cadets destined for the Merchant Navy.
The debate prompted us to seek out 20 year-old Cameron Jones, a third phase Trinity House cadet at Warsash Maritime Academy for a fresh view of the future of navigation. The Trinity House Merchant Navy Scholarship scheme trains 90 cadets per year as deck, engineering and electro-technical officers, providing bursaries to fund them through courses at UK nautical colleges.
Date: October 19, 2012
From onboard internet cafes to port sustainability, we’ve been keeping an eye on the industry’s most interesting stories from the past week. Here’s a quick selection:
ECDIS Moves into the “M Cloud” – During SMM Hamburg last month, gCaptain caught up with Steinar Gundersen, the CEO of ECDIS-provider MARIS to talk about developments in ECDIS. Whilst shipowners are excited by reducing fuel costs by the integration of weather data, Gundersen is most excited about the M cloud. Mariners will have the ability to send and receive data from remote ECDIS units onboard, giving ship managers an opportunity to log in via their computers and mobile devices, including the iPhone, to view critical ship information in real-time.
Bernhard Schulte internet roll-out – In a bid to keep mariners connected with onshore life Bernhard Schulte has announced that it will provide new crew internet café facilities to the seafarers serving on its vessels. Digital Ship reports that the crew internet project will be delivered on-board by Inmarsat, Telaccount Overseas and World Link Communications, and is expected to be available within three to six months.
GreenPort Congress – At the seventh GreenPort Congress, in Marseille earlier this month it was recognised that port authorities need to play a proactive role towards sustainable shipping. The Motorship reported that, during the opening session, Jean-Claude Terrier, CEO of the Port of Marseille Fos, referred to the current economic and financial crisis confirming that there is an urgent need to review port development methods to ensure sustainability. However, both the port of Calais and port of Moerdijk were presented with their EcoPorts PERS award, which certifies that their environmental programmes are compliant with regulation.
If you have read anything interesting this week that you’d like to share, let us know.
Date: October 1, 2012
It is said that when the late, great Steve Jobs set out to develop the iPad, he described what he wanted to the development team, swore them to secrecy, and left them to it. How it worked was less important than the way it looked, felt and functioned, and that consumers wanted one the moment they saw it.
Comparisons to the shipping industry might be stretching the metaphor but recent SMM show in Hamburg produced one or two moments of revelation. Could we soon be installing an ECDIS so intuitive it needs no manual? Will touch screen navigation be the next big thing for navigation? How does the industry manage the massive retro-fit and compatibility challenge?