• 2020 January 14 10:21

    Panama Canal to adopt measures to ensure water availability & route's reliability

    Due to changing rainfall patterns and historic low water levels at Gatun Lake, the main source of water for the waterway, the Panama Canal will implement a series of new measures beginning February 15 to sustain an operational level of water and provide reliability to customers while it implements a long-term solution to water, the company said in its release.

    Despite the use of extensive water-conservation measures, this past year's rainfall was 20 percent below the historic average and the fifth driest year in 70 years. It follows several years of lower than average rainfall coupled by a 10 percent increase in water evaporation levels due to a 0.5-1.5 degree Celsius rise in temperature.

    Without fee and operational changes, the Canal's water levels are projected to drop to levels that would affect the Neopanamax and Panamax Locks. These new measures are intended to better provide reliability in water levels and therefore transit schedules.

    The measures include the following components:

    Freshwater Surcharge
     A new freshwater fee will be applied to all vessels over 125 feet in length overall (LOA) that transit through the Panama Canal. In addition, a variable fee ranging from a minimum of 1 percent to a maximum of 10 percent of the vessel's toll will be applied depending on Gatun Lake levels at the time of transit (i.e. if the lake has a higher level, the percentage will be lower and vice versa).

    Adjustments to the Booking System
     The Panama Canal will adjust the number of daily reservation slots available to 27, replicating the total offered during lane outages. The waterway will also require that each vessel pays its booking fee in full no later than 48 hours depending on the booking period.

     Regulars (up to 90.99 feet in beam): 6 slots
     "Supers" (up to 107 feet in beam): 13 slots
     Neopanamax: 8 slots (unchanged)

    One slot for supers and one slot for regular vessels will be awarded through the auction process three days before transits.

    Nonetheless, the Canal will continue to provide additional capacity when possible, serving vessels on a first-come, first-serve basis.

     A handling service fee will be applied to all visits for transit at the time they are created in the system. The processing fee will be applied as follows:
     For vessels 91 feet in beam and over: $5,000.
     For vessels over 125 feet LOA, but less than 91 feet in beam: $1,500.
     The fee will be deducted from the vessel's tolls invoice once the vessel begins transit. If the vessel cancels the visit and does not transit, the Vessel Visit Creation Fee will not be refunded. All visits created prior to February 15, 2020 will be honored and will not be required to pay this fee.

    Together, the new measures will allow the Panama Canal to better anticipate the number and type of ships transiting the waterway, and therefore allocate water resources accordingly.

    In order to plan accordingly, customers will be provided with real-time data on current and projected levels of Gatun Lake, available maximum drafts, and number and types of transits when requesting transits or making reservations. The official lake levels will be published daily, as well as forecasted for the following 2 months.

    The decision to adopt such measures was taken following an evaluation of the impact of innovative techniques already instituted to save water used in the Canal's operations. For example, the Panama Canal has been implementing cross-filling lockages, a technique that sends water between the two lanes at the Panamax Locks during transits and saves an amount of water equivalent to that used in six lockages each day. Other ongoing water-saving measures adopted at the Panama Canal include:

     Suspension of power generation at the Gatun Hydroelectric Plant
     Elimination of hydraulic assistance at the Panamax Locks
     Tandem lockages, which involves two ships transiting at the same time, when vessel size allows
     Use of water-saving basins at the Neopanamax Locks

    In addition to these measures, the Panama Canal will expand its investment program to include projects focused on addressing the sustainability of the water supply in the medium and long-term. The Panama Canal will continue to dedicate a portion of its income to analyzing and identifying solutions to the problem of water availability in the watershed.

    About the Panama Canal

    The Panama Canal Authority is an autonomous legal entity of the Republic of Panama in charge of the operation, administration, management, preservation, maintenance, and modernization of the Panama Canal, as well as its activities and related services, so that the Canal may operate in a safe, continuous, efficient manner.




2020 September 28

12:11 Abu Dhabi Ports acquires MICCO to become a leading provider of fully integrated supply chain logistics solutions
11:36 RF Government approves National Programme for Far East Development
11:13 Aker Solutions awarded subsea contract for Breidablikk
10:51 Hornsea Two monopile installation scheduled to start next month
10:21 Shipbuilding, Ship Repair Corporation launches non-self-propelled suction hopper dredger of Project 4395
09:52 Tallink suspends operation of Helsinki-Riga route until end of October
09:30 Tallink changes weekend operating schedule of Tallinn-Helsinki route shuttle vessel Star
09:14 Baltic Dry Index as of September 25
08:48 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, Sept 28

2020 September 27

16:43 Milaha signs key deal with major oilfield services firm
15:31 RINA and SDARI: an innovative step towards 3D ship classification
14:28 Belfast Harbour is hosting an innovative study which could help change the way ports and harbours manage air quality
13:48 ABP invests £10 million to repair Swansea West Pier
12:49 Huntington Ingalls Industries restores drinking water, conducts steam testing during USS George Washington (CVN 73) refueling and complex overhaul
12:03 The Manor Endurance sets sail for her first charter
11:29 NYK and JMU introduce shipbuilding contract that guarantees propulsion in actual sea conditions

2020 September 26

15:52 Port Freeport enters partnership with CEMEX Servicios Logisticos and Union Pacific Railroad
14:32 Coast Guard rescue two mariners from disabled catamaran near Oahu
13:43 NAT orders two -2- Suezmax newbuildings in South Korea
12:38 JAXPORT CEO Green named one of Florida’s top business leaders for third year in a row
12:06 Northwest to Midwest: New rail service builds on NWSA’s intermodal growth
11:02 IUMI: Loss prevention remains a vital element in ensuring the insurability of maritime risk
10:53 Huntington Ingalls Industries breaks ground on unmanned systems center of excellence

2020 September 25

18:07 Tripartite agreement signed on establishing the FSRU terminal in the Bay of Gdansk
17:55 Baltic Fuel Company shipped first batch of bitumen
17:39 Scorpio Bulkers announces purchase of shares by Scorpio Services
17:34 Vessel “Razul Rza” sent to outer waters after the repair works
17:12 Metal Shark debuts 48-meter catamaran expedition vessel and introduces "Metal Shark Yachts" portfolio
16:51 Ningbo Containerized Freight Index rises significantly in September
16:19 OOCL's service update for Trans-Pacific trade
16:16 Representative office of Marinet opened in China
15:27 GTT signs a contract with the U.S. Dep't of Defense for the Red Hill Bulk Fuel Storage Facility
14:59 RFC held the second stage of the ecological marathon
14:31 Bunker prices are flat in the Port of Saint-Petersburg, Russia (graph)
14:05 Zvezda shipyard to build 10 gas tankers for Arctic LNG 2
13:42 Wärtsilä solutions meet challenging needs of Canadian Coast Guard vessel
13:18 Nuclear-powered container carrier Sevmorput delivered Kamchatka fish to Saint-Petersburg
12:56 Competition for construction of two scientific research ships for Russian Federal Fisheries Agency to be announced in October
12:34 Royal Niestern Sander orders SCHOTTEL thrusters for world’s first shallow-draught ice-breaking W2W vessel
12:11 VEB.RF starts financing construction of ten gas tankers for Arctic LNG 2 project
11:29 LR awards Samsung Heavy Industries AiP for its ammonia-fuelled tanker
10:37 British Ports Association sets out spending review priorities
10:29 New state programme on Arctic development in 2021-2024 drafted by Russia’s ad hoc Ministry
09:53 Debt service guarantees on Yamal LNG removed from NOVATEK
09:30 Oil prices rise in hope of demand
09:12 Baltic Dry Index as of September 24
09:11 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, Sept 25

2020 September 24

18:37 Kongsberg Digital develops cloud-based simulators for maritime industry, with funds from Innovation Norway
18:07 Wärtsilä ranked first in UN challenge to fight climate change with big data
17:45 Alco Bio Fuel, Messer Benelux and IJsfabriek Strombeek once again invest in recycling CO2 in North Sea Port
17:20 World’s first subsea compression system passes five years in operation
17:12 Esben Poulsson reappointed as ICS Chairman for a new term
16:48 Okskaya Shipyard launches first multipurpose dry cargo carrier of Project RSD59 for Astrol
16:24 Severnaya Verf starts cutting steel for seventh trawler of Project 170701 for NOREBO Group
15:50 ASCO's vessel “Razul Rza” sent to outer waters after repairs
15:26 Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) to invest in Sovcomflot, says RDIF CEO
15:02 Diana Shipping announces the sale of a Capesize Dry bulk vessel
14:39 Russian Railways launches regular multimodal service from China to Europe via the ports of Kaliningrad and Hamburg
14:17 MABUX releases its weekly review of bunker market
14:02 Fincantieri starts dry dock works for experimental vessel Zeus