What We're Reading: Trendwatch Week 48

Commodity shippers are struggling to obtain 2020-compliant fuel

Ships hauling everything from iron ore to coal and grains are struggling to obtain the fuels they need to test them in time for the start of sweeping environmental legislation that takes effect in six weeks’ time, a situation that could ultimately result in vessels having to temporarily halt trading.

So-called tramp ships, an industry term dating back to the 19th Century to describe vessels that don’t follow fixed trade routes, urgently need the supplies to ensure safe operation when the rules enter into force, Dimitrios Fafalios, chairman of the International Association of Dry Cargo Shipowners, said in an interview in London. Intercargo members operate a quarter of the world’s coal, ore and grain carriers by capacity.

Source: Bloomberg


CINS publishes first guidelines to help reduce containership fire risk

A container shipping group, set up to increase safety levels in the industry following a string of sometimes fatal box ship fires, has produced its first set of guidelines to help operators prevent further incidents.

The Cargo Incident Notification System (CINS) today published Safety Considerations for Ship Operators Related to Risk-Based Stowage of Dangerous Goods on Containerships, specifically in response to “a number of serious fire incidents in recent years, often caused by deficiencies in cargo declaration and cargo packing”.

Source: The Loadstar


US energy-related CO2 emissions rose in 2018 for the first year since 2014

Total U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in 2018 rose to 5.27 billion metric tons, 2.7% more than its 2017 level. The primary reasons for the increase were higher natural gas-related emissions resulting from more extreme summer and winter weather and growth in transportation-related petroleum emissions, linked to a strong economy. U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions declined in 6 of the past 10 years and were 12% lower in 2018 than in 2005, according to a data series published in the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Monthly Energy Review.

Source: AJOT


Tentative labor agreement struck between CN and union conductors and yard crews

On November 26, Class I freight railroad carrier CN said it has reached a tentative agreement with the company’s 3,200 conductors and yard crews working on CN’s mainline and yards in Canada for a new collective agreement.

On November 16, the Teamsters Canadian Rail Conference (TCRC), which represents the 3,200 CN train conductors and railyard coordinators in Canada, gave CN a 72-hour notice of its intention to strike on November 19.

Source: Supply Chain 24/7


Will trucking make a turnaround in 2020?

Spot rates could rebound 4% to 6% in the second half of 2020 while contract rates could climb 2%, DAT forecasted after a year of spot rates favoring shippers. While truckload volumes hit a five-year high in October and spot rates were up 7.3% year-over-year, high capacity levels kept spot rates low for the month, according to DAT.

Source: Supply Chain Dive