Maritime Environmental Committee Events

Upcoming Events

June 9, 2016

Announcing the 4th Annual Port Environmental Initiatives Forum


Maryland Ports Administration - Bill Richardson, Environmental Manager, Safety, Environment & Risk Management

Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics Americas LLC. - Mike Derby, Environmental Champion, Region Americas and General Manager, North Atlantic

Long Beach Container Terminal - Anthony Otto, President


Mr. Kurt Nagle, President, American Association of Ports Authorities


This year’s discussion will focus on how cutting edge technologies in port design and management are being envisioned to enhance economic and environmental efficiencies at ports.

RSVPs preferred to Walk-Ins Welcome.

Past Events

March 20, 2014

Announcing the March 20, 2014 FMC Speaker Series Presentation

Navigational Developments and the Viability of Commercialized Shipping in the Arctic


Dr. John Farrell
Executive Director of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission

Captain David Murk
Senior Maritime Safety and Security Advisor to the Secretary of Transportation at the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Key Industry Issues Presented:

  • Interest in shipping in the Arctic is increasing due to record low levels of ice.
  • Challenges to increased shipping in the Arctic include: poor hydrography and charting; lack of deep water ports and other infrastructure; inadequate and incomplete information regarding infrastructure, search and rescue, and safety and security policies; a short navigable season; and the negative impacts of black carbon on ice.
  • In May 2013, the White House issued the National Strategy for the Arctic Region, which set forth an implementation plan to advance U.S. security interests, pursue responsible Arctic region stewardship, and strengthen international cooperation.
  • On July 30, 2013, a multi-agency group lead by the Committee on Marine Transportation (CMTS) U.S. Arctic Marine Transportation Integrated Action Team and the Department of Transportation (DOT) sent a report to the President. The report, U.S. Arctic Marine Transportation System: Overview and Priorities for Action 2013, identified and reviewed existing Arctic Marine Transportation System policies, assessed present and projected uses of the Arctic, and described essential elements for safe, secure, and environmentally sustainable U.S. Arctic Marine Transportation System.
  • In February 2014, a study released by the U.S. Coast Guard explored the Feasibility of Establishing an Arctic Deep-draft Seaport, reviewing 14 candidate sites.

The Federal Maritime Commission does not endorse the positions or products of any of its Brown Bag participants.

September 20, 2013

FMC to Host Presentation on Environmental Best Practices in Cruise Line and Passenger Vessel Industries, September 20, 2013

Environmental Best Practices in the Cruise Line and Passenger Vessel Industry


Charles (Bud) Darr
Senior Vice President of Technical and Regulatory Affairs,
Cruise Line International Association (CLIA)
The Cruise Line International Association (CLIA) represents the majority of cruise lines internationally with a goal of providing one industry voice on matters of policy and industry promotion.

Edmund (Ed) Welch
Legislative Director
Passenger Vessel Association (PVA)
The Passenger Vessel Association represents US Flag Vessel Operators in a variety of industries including Ferries, Coastal Cruise Ships, and Dinner Boats.

Key Industry Issues Presented:

  • Increased Energy Efficiency through new technical solutions will allow for a more environmentally friendly cruise industry while reducing cruise line operating costs.
  • Minimizing production of waste and separation of waste at the source reduces the cost and complexity of treatment and processing.
  • The cruise industry has implemented a number of practices in addition to a comprehensive recycling program including:
    • Onboard waste water treatment for reuse in industrial tasks; and
    • Processing of waste and sludge to produce energy
  • The EPA Vessel General Permit (VPG) applies to discharges generated by vessels in compliance with the Clean Water Act (CWA). The VPG provides management best practices for authorized discharges and is in effect for 5 years.
  • PVA Green Water Program has instituted a voluntary program providing PVA members with a "best practices" guidebook and environmental checklist for companies to develop their own environmental policies for land and vessel based operations.

The Federal Maritime Commission does not endorse the positions or products of any of its Brown Bag participants.

May 21, 2013

Announcing the Second Annual Port Environmental Initiatives Forum

On May 21, 2013, the Federal Maritime Commission, in conjunction with its Maritime Environmental Committee, hosted the second annual Ports Forum. The event was moderated by Kurt Nagle, President of the American Association of Port Authorities and focused on water quality issues, including: ballast exchange, maintenance dredging, and storm water management.

Participants:Participants of the Port Forum

Maryland Ports Administration - David Blazer, Chief, Dredge Material Management Program

Port of Seattle - Paul Meyer, Manager, Environmental Permitting and Compliance

Georgia Ports Authority – Christopher Novak, Director of Engineering and Facilities Maintenance


Mr. Kurt Nagle, President, American Association of Ports Authorities

The Maryland Port Administration (MPA)

David Blazer, Chief of the Dredge Material Management Program, at the MPA, detailed the Port of Baltimore’s (POB) recent initiatives including energy conservation efforts, underground storage tank removal, and comprehensive efforts to improve air and water quality near the port.

POB has made air quality improvements due in part to a diesel emission reduction effort and upgrade or replacement of 24 dray trucks, 10 locomotives, 3 harbor craft, and 42 pieces of cargo handling equipment.

Significant water quality improvements have occurred through a storm water master plan and sediment collection program with participation by port tenants and port users, while bioretention structures and floating wetlands are in use to improve water quality at Colgate Creek.

Collaborative efforts by the POB and MPA have created hundreds of acres of wetlands via an environmentally sensitive dredging program that included restoration of Poplar Island.

POB is also funding the only vessel-mounted ballast water testing facility to conduct field tests for real world application.

The Port of Seattle

Paul Meyer, Manager of Environmental Permitting and Compliance at the Port of Seattle, describes the Stormwater Management Program as a two-step approach focusing both on treatment and management. The treatment of stormwater consists of best management practices (BMP) and source control treatments. The management component focuses on regulatory compliance, planning, and asset management.

Meyer described the challenge of regulatory compliance and encourages the creation of a national database for stormwater BMPs to foster the use of innovative programs that are already field tested.

The Port attempts to utilize source control BMPs (lot sweeping, catch basin cleaning) as a first step in stormwater management. This proactive approach prevents sediments from entering port waters and results in nearly 2,600 tons of sediment collected annually.

In addition to source control programs, the Port also uses natural filtration treatments and hydrodynamic separation of particulate matter from runoff.

The Georgia Ports Authority (GPA)

Christopher Novak, Director of Engineering and Facilities Maintenance at GPA, provided highlights of a Stormwater Master Plan and Silt Suspension Plan at the Garden City Terminal site which covers over 1200 acres.

In order to minimize the flow of stormwater to the Savannah River, the GPA has constructed 13.6 acres of detention areas and increased the treatment area of the terminal to 94%.

The Silt Suspension Plan was designed to deal with some of the worst sedimentation and shoaling problems in Savannah Harbor that has required regular dredging of berthing depths.

To offset slowing river velocities, GPA uses silt suspension units; since 2004, 16 units have been in use within high silt accumulation areas. These units guide sediment downriver and have reduced the Port’s dredging needs from once every 9 months to once every 5 years.

Previous Maritime Environmental Events Summaries


Contact Information

FMC's Maritime Environmental Committee

Phone: 202-523-5911

Fax: 202-523-4224

E-mail: FMC's Maritime Environmental Committee