Federal Maritime Commission Chairman Richard A. Lidinsky Jr. says he would like to assess the economic effects of slow-steaming to ensure the practice is not causing "unreasonable constraints" on the international supply chain.
In a message this week, Lidinsky said the FMC will devote a portion of its Jan. 26 meeting to looking at the economic effects of slow-steaming over the past year.
In January 2010 the commission gave the Transpacific Stabilization Agreement, which comprises carriers in the eastbound Pacific trade, authority to discuss operating at lower speeds to save fuel and reduce air pollution. Lidinsky said the practice "affords substantial cost savings during this period of financial stress."
At the FMC's Dec. 8 meeting, Lidinsky signaled his intention to go further, saying the commission should look at "the effects on our supply chain, capacity, rates, fuel charges and emissions over the past year."
In his message this week, Lidinsky noted TSA members now want to use their authority to look at increased use of alternative fuels, cold-ironing and the use of technologies to reduce air emissions.
"While these practices hold promise for reducing vessels' emissions," Lidinksy said, "the commission will closely monitor slow-steaming arrangements to ensure that they do not cause unreasonable constraints now that international shipping demand has recovered."
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