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Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Houston Authority News

The Bayonne Bridge (The growth in part can be attributed to the completion in June 2017 of the Bayonne Bridge Navigational Clearance Project, which raised the clearance under the bridge from 151 feet to 215 feet, allowing the world’s largest container ships to pass under it and serve port terminals in New York and New Jersey.) Credit: Port NY/NJ

CONTAINER PORTS: Boxed in or Busting Out?

Benchmarking the Nation’s top container ports in 2018 and looking ahead to what comes next.The nation’s major ports finished 2018 and began 2019 setting monthly and yearly container volume records, but agitated trade activity in the White House raised questions about what corrections would be permanent and which would not.President Donald Trump said on Febuary 24 he is delaying the scheduled March 1 increase in the tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese imports. The president said on Twitter he wants to give negotiators more time to reach a comprehensive trade deal with Beijing.

Image: Port of Houston Authority

Houston Widens Ship Channel

The Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority has decided to accelerate widening of the Houston Ship Channel, the nation’s busiest waterway.The Port Authority is working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and other representatives of the federal government, as well as Port of Houston and Houston Ship Channel stakeholders, to obtain authorization and accelerated funding and completion, of a deepened and widened ship channel.“The Houston Ship Channel is open for business for all and will continue to be…

File Image (AdobeStock / © Taras)

Coast Guard Proposes Annual Great Lakes Pilotage Increase

“When somebody says it’s not about the money, it’s about the money.” – H.L. Mencken, American journalist and essayist, 1880-1956.This report is about Great Lakes pilotage rates. It’s all about the money. In fact, it’s hard to find someone who even suggests that it’s not about the money.For fifty or so Great Lakes pilots, it’s about cold hard cash: now. For others, say, vessel owners, it’s about wasted resources, about lost chances for a more efficient and sustainable system; “opportunity costs,” as economists like to say.

Port Houston’s newest ship-to-shore cranes stand nearly 30 stories tall with a boom length of 211 ft. able to load and unload vessels up to 22 containers wide. (Photo: Business Wire)

New Cranes Arrive at Port Houston’s Bayport Terminal

The arrival of three new 270 foot-tall Super Post-Panamax cranes to Port Houston’s Bayport Container Terminal on Tuesday highlights $100 million in terminal investments.The three neo-panamax ship-to-shore (STS) cranes were the first of two crane shipments Port Houston received this week. Five rubber-tired-gantry (RTG) cranes were delivered Wednesday.“The level of activity with the shipments of cranes this week is unprecedented,” said Executive Director Roger Guenther. “To see…

Courtesy Port of Houston Authority

Port Houston Reports Strong Q1 2018

Year-to-date total tonnage for Port Houston through March is at 9.7 million, reflecting a 2 percent increase compared to the same period last year. Results showed that bulk material and steel were the primary drivers for the growth. “We continue to see positive activity for all sectors of business through Port Houston facilities,” Port Houston Executive Director Roger Guenther said Monday to the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority during the April meeting. Cargo showed year-to-date increases across all major lines.

(Photo: Bahri)

Bahri Reinforces Americas Commitment

Reinforcing its three-decade-long presence in North America, transportation and logistics firm Bahri took part in Breakbulk Americas, being held from October 17-19, in Houston. The Bahri booth at Breakbulk Americas was opened by Mr. Sultan bin Abdullah Al-Angari, Consul General of Saudi Arabia in Houston, during a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the first day of the annual event in the presence of Amal Al-Ruwaii, Director for Trade and Investment, Embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in United States of America…

Photo: Port Houston

Port Houston Box Volumes Continue to Rise

“Port Houston handled close to 10 million tons of total tonnage, reflecting an increase of eleven percent over 2016,” Port Houston Executive Director Roger Guenther announced during the April meeting of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority. During the first quarter of this year, Port Houston facilities handled 607,000 TEUs. Guenther said the majority of this increase is largely due to an increase in container volumes, which showed an increase of 18 percent.

© phanuwatnandee / Adobe Stock

Bill Aims to Aid US Maritime Workforce Development

Reps. New legislation introduced his week intends to advance the capabilities of two-year community and technical colleges to assist the federal government and industry in securing the talent pipeline for domestic maritime industry jobs. “In our district, we have a surplus of maritime jobs and not enough people with the skills and training to fill them,” said Representatives Gene Green (D-Texas), who introduced the bill with Rob Wittman (R-Va.). “The industry is continuing to invest and grow along the Port of Houston…

(L-R) Ricky Kunz, Chief Commercial Officer, Port of Houston Authority; Eng. Ibrahim Al-Omar, Group CEO, Bahri; Sultan Al Angari, Consul General of Saudi Arabia in Houston; and Steven Blowers, Country Manager, Bahri Logistics (America) (Photo: Bahri)

Bahri Opens Office in Houston

Bahri has opened its second North American office in Houston, home to one of the country’s largest breakbulk and general cargo ports. The new location is Bahri’s second in North America, following Bahri Logistics (America), which has been operating out of Bahri’s U.S. headquarters in Baltimore since 1992. The Bahri (America) Houston office will be led by Cliff Kuhfeldt, an 18-year shipping industry veteran, who will be responsible for the U.S. Gulf and South Atlantic territory reporting to Steven Blowers, Country Manager, Bahri Logistics (America).

Photo: Houston International Seafarers' Center

Seafarers' Center Honors Houston Port Executive Director

The "Bronze Anchor Award" recognizes an individual, company or organization that has demonstrated a steadfast commitment to promoting the HISC mission and vision, and served as a leader and advocate for the welfare of seafarers. Guenther will be officially honored as a "Bronze Anchor Award" recipient at the HISC Maritime Gala to be held May 6, 2017. The gala will be held earlier in the year than normal and will coincide with the Seafarers' Center's upcoming move to a new location at the Port of Houston.

Photo: Port of Houston Authority

Port of Houston Expecting Record Cargo Year

“We fully expect to top last year’s container volume with another record year in 2016,” said Roger Guenther, Port of Houston Authority Executive Director, speaking to the Port Commission during its latest meeting. The Houston Port Authority said it has handled more than 1.6 million TEU through its container terminals to date this year, and it expects to maintain “strong growth” through the remainder of the year. All told, the port’s general cargo and container terminals handled more than 26 million tons of cargo through September.

AAPA President and CEO Kurt Nagle Photo AAPA

Transportation Industry to Focus on Freight Infrastructure

The Port of Houston Authority and Port Corpus Christi, in conjunction with the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA), will hold separate freight industry “Influencers Roundtables” on Aug. 17 (at the Port of Houston Authority) and Aug. 18 (at Port Corpus Christi), followed each day by a tour of that port. Titled, “Freight: Keep it Moving,” the two port forums will bring together key thought-leaders throughout the transportation industry to explore critical issues facing U.S. seaports and discuss the increasing strain on the nation’s freight transportation infrastructure.

Photo:  Port of Houston Authority

Houston First Port of Call for Asian Service

In anticipation of increased opportunities for inbound consumer goods and outbound industrial commodities, Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co. have joined forces to operate a new direct all-water container service between the U.S Gulf and Asia. The new service by the 2M Alliance features the “Lone Star Express” by MSC and “TP18” by Maersk. The first sailing is scheduled to depart Asia May 2, with Houston as the first U.S. inbound port call. The Lone Star/TP18 Gulf service will have a rotation of Qingdao, Ningbo, Shanghai, Xiamen, Yantian, Busan, Cristobal, Houston, Mobile and Miami.

Photo: San Jacinto College

San Jacinto College Opens Maritime Training Center

With the cut of a ribbon and ring of a bell, San Jacinto College marked the grand opening of the new Maritime Technology and Training Center on the Maritime Campus on March 8, 2016. The Center is located next to a turning basin along the Port of Houston at 3700 Old Highway 146 in La Porte, Texas - the ideal location for students training to enter the maritime industry, and for current mariners upgrading their U.S. Coast Guard certifications. “This is what we have envisioned for many years,” said Dr. Brenda Hellyer, San Jacinto College Chancellor.

Photo: Maersk Line

Maersk Line to Stay at Houston Port

The world’s biggest shipping company, Maersk Line, and its affiliated shipping services, SeaLand and Safmarine, has agreed to continue to call at the Port of Houston after APM Terminals, a unit of Maersk Group, said it was permanently terminating its operations there, the Port of Houston Authority said. Under the deal, APMT has operated its own section of Barbours Cut terminal,  however; the lease will now be transferred to the port authority effective July 24. According to Maersk, its current services that call the Port of Houston Authority's terminals will remain unchanged and uninterrupted.

The delegation learned more about the Houston Ship Channel aboard one of the Port of Houston Authority's three Emergency Response Vessels. The group also saw the Port Authority's four new Super Post-Panamax Ship-to-Shore cranes at the Barbours Cut Container Terminal. (Photo: Port of Houston Authority)

Congressional Leaders Visit Port of Houston

The Port of Houston Authority hosted Congressional leaders on port matters for a facilitated visit and tour of the Port of Houston, Friday, June 5. Congresswoman Janice Hahn, Congressman Ted Poe and Congressman Brian Babin visited the Port of Houston and learned more about the national impact of the Port of Houston overall and in particular its safety and security measures. The visit was arranged upon the invitation of Congressman Poe, who along with Congresswoman Hahn co-chair the PORTS Caucus, which represents more than 100 ports across the nation.

Kristin Decas (Photo: AAPA)

AAPA Chairwoman to Speak at National Maritime Day

Kristin Decas, port director and CEO of Southern California’s Port of Hueneme and chairwoman of the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA), has been chosen to speak at the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Maritime Day ceremony on May 21. National Maritime Day, May 22, was decreed by Congress in 1933 as a day for the United States to observe its maritime heritage, honor those who serve and have served as merchant mariners, and recognize the benefits that result from America’s maritime industry.

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“Bright Ideas” program - Ash Center - Harvard University

The Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, recognized the Port of Houston Partners in Maritime Education as part of the 2015 Bright Ideas program. This year's cohort includes 124 programs from all levels of government--school districts; county, city, state, and federal agencies; as well as public-private partnerships--that are at the forefront in innovative government action. Since 2009, the Port of…

Courtesy Port of Houston

PHA Budgets $ 275 mi for Capital Improvements

In 2015, the Port of Houston Authority has budgeted $275 million for various capital improvement projects. About $184 million is being allocated to its container terminals for continuing development of Bayport and modernization at Barbours Cut, and another $35 million is for improvements at the Turning Basin’s general cargo and bulk terminals. The remaining 2015 capital budget funds will be used for railroad improvements, channel development, port security, building renovations and information technology.

At the groundbreaking ceremony for the new San Jacinto College Maritime Training Center (Photo: Jeannie Peng-Armao, San Jacinto College)

San Jacinto College Breaks Ground on New Training Center

San Jacinto College has broken ground along the Port of Houston for its new 45,000-square-foot Maritime Training Center. At the site of 3700 Old Highway 146 in La Porte, stood student Dave Allen, taking in the view of concrete piers that will support San Jacinto College Maritime Training Center, a facility to prepare new mariners and serve as local training site. “This is going to prepare so many people for work in this industry,” said the San Jacinto College maritime student, who is on track for employment with a local maritime company and completes his second internship this year.

Photo: Port of Houston Authority

Port of Houston Reports Banner Year

Houston’s Port Commission Chairman Janiece Longoria delivered the 2014 State of the port address in early November. Completing her second year, chairman Longoria reported to a capacity crowd of almost 500 people that the Port of Houston Authority (PHA) is enjoying business success, also stressing PHA’s efforts to carry out its mission of economic development, with continued commitments to safety, maritime education, environmental stewardship and the community. Longoria stated…

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Houston Port Commission Approves budget

The Fiscal Year 2015 Operating and Capital Budget was approved Thursday during a special meeting of the Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority. Projections by the Port Authority anticipate increased revenues in 2015, driven in large part by an increase in both import and export container volumes, with an expected pullback in steel tonnage after a banner year in 2014. Overall cargo volumes at the Port Authority continue to grow, with total tonnage in 2014 five percent higher than the previous year. Total revenues are projected to increase by 1.6 percent in 2015.

Great Day for Centennial Rededication of Houston Ship Channel

Houston Ship Channel Celebrates 100 years

Blue skies and a cool breeze set the stage for a once-in-a-century event today: the 100th anniversary rededication of the opening of Houston's deep-water port. International Longshoremen's Association, Houston Pilots, U.S. Coast Guard, current and former Port Commissioners, industry stakeholders and others, attended the Houston Ship Channel Rededication at Brady's Landing overlooking the Houston Ship Channel. The event took place 100 years to the day of the original ceremony in 1914 when President Woodrow Wilson fired a cannon by remote control from his office in Washington D.C.

Vice President Joe Biden (White House photo)

Biden to Keynote AAPA Convention in Houston

U.S. Vice President Joe R. Biden, Jr. will deliver the keynote address on Wednesday, November 12, at the American Association of Port Authority’s (AAPA) 103rd Annual Convention and Expo in Houston, hosted by the Port of Houston Authority. Vice President Biden is a strong proponent of America’s ports, as evidenced by recent visits to ports in Philadelphia, Norfolk, Savannah, Charleston, Granite City, Ill. (America’s Central Port), Baltimore and, within the past year, Houston. During his return visit to Houston to address AAPA’s annual convention…

Houston Port Authority Commissioner Clyde Fitzgerald joins Norwegian Jewel Captain Kenneth Harstrom, Port Commission Chairman Janiece Longoria and Port Commissioner John Kennedy for a traditional plaque exchange upon the sh

Houston Welcomes Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line returned to Houston on Saturday, October 11. Its Norwegian Jewel arrived at the Bayport Cruise Terminal in Pasadena, Texas. This inaugural call marked the beginning of the 2014 Fall Cruise Season for the Port of Houston Authority, as it celebrates the centennial year of the Houston Ship Channel. During a ceremony onboard, Norwegian Jewel's Captain Kenneth Harstrom tipped his new cowboy hat to the great state of Texas, as he welcomed officials from the Port Commission, including Chairman Janiece Longoria and Port Commissioners Clyde Fitzgerald and John Kennedy.

Don Allee (Photo: Port of New Orleans)

Allee to Lead Cruise and Tourism at Port of New Orleans

Port industry veteran Don Allee will assume control of the Port’s Cruise and Tourism Division in January, following the retirement of current Director J. Robert Jumonville. Jumonville, who will retire in January after 25 years at the Port, oversaw the planning and construction of all three Julia St. Cruise Terminals, including the present consolidation of the two terminals into one modern terminal completed in 2011. Jumonville was also instrumental in the design and construction of the Erato Street Cruise Terminal and Parking Garage Complex…