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IMO is looking at a global levy (tax) on marine fuels. Do you think this is

a really good idea
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a really bad idea

Marine Log

June 23, 2008

Study: New York needs more dry docks

The New York City area's maritime industry is thriving. So much so, that there is a desperate need for increased dry dock capacity.

The Port of New York and New Jersey is the largest port on the East Coast and the third largest port in the U.S. For each of the past eight years, the Port has grown at an average of seven percent, representing an overall growth rate in container trades of 54 percent. This increase leads directly to increased demand for maritime support services. For example, a container vessel arriving at the Port might require the services of a pilot boat, two tugs, a fuel barge and a sludge barge. Support service vessels and facilities ideally are available within a reasonable distance from the primary vessel and are expected to operate around the clock seven days a week.

Earlier this month, the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) today announced the findings and recommendations of its Maritime Support Services Location Study.

SUNY Maritime College was commissioned by NYCEDC and the Brooklyn Navy Yard to conduct the study to examine the economic impact of New York City's maritime industry and associated support services. It was funded in part by New York State’s Department of State through its Environmental Protection Fund.

Based on the expected increase in port activities in New York Harbor, the study found that it is likely that additional dry-dock capacity will be needed to meet future growth. Currently, there is an 18 month waiting time for repair and maintenance for the East Coast tug fleet, forcing many to go out of the region for service. According to the study, about 25 single occupancy dry docks will be needed by 2016.

This part of the study has been seized on by some critics to denounce a decision four years ago by the Bloomberg Administration that allowed furniture giant IKEA to fill in a graving dock at its new Red Hook, Brooklyn, super store for use as a parking lot.

Among the studies findings:

The maritime support industry provides 11,870 direct/indirect jobs in NYC, of which 7,084 are waterborne positions

The maritime support industry represents $2.0-$2.5 billion in economic activity

The industry generates $1.1 billion in wages

The NYC tug fleet has increased 35% since 1991 representing a quarter of the East Coast total fleet

The Port's barge fleet has increased more than 20% since 1991 representing one third of the East Coast total fleet

The tug and barge sector eliminates more than 3.1 million trucks from the NYC's roads

The study also recommends:

  • Development of Maritime Support Service Hubs (MSSH) for auxiliary services to provide all workboat needs in one location and collect vessel parking fees to be used for pier maintenance and development. The first facility will be developed by SUNY Maritime College at its Throggs Neck facility in the Bronx.
  • Preservation and strengthening support the six existing significant maritime industrial zones;
  • Improve and create necessary additional infrastructure;
  • Establish an additional mooring buoy zone to meet tie-up and berthing space shortage;
  • Encourage private investment in City-owned properties that can be used for maritime support services by offering them for long-term lease.

You can download a copy of the full study, HERE

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