Cruise Ship Rides Out Severe Storm

By MarEx 2016-02-08 13:31:15

Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas departed Cape Liberty, NJ for Port Canaveral on Saturday, with 4,529 passengers and 1,616 crew aboard. On Sunday, she entered a rapidly developing, severe storm with sustained winds to 65 knots and seas in the range of 30 feet, centered off the Carolinas.

Images posted by passengers aboard show overhead paneling torn free, chairs and stools tossed about the decks and planters shattered and spilled. “At 949 pm we had winds of 106 knots . . . and that wasn’t even the worst of it,” tweeted Vinnie (@NYR230), who appended a photo of a cabin-mounted weather display as evidence:

Passengers posting to CruiseCritic.com’s message boards in real time reported that they were confined to their cabins beginning at 3:30 PM Sunday. The captain informed them that due to worsening conditions he would put the bow into the wind and ride out the storm at low speed.

The storm began to abate in the late evening, and by one in the morning the Anthem was under way again, passengers reported. A Royal Caribbean spokeswoman told Florida media outlets that the weather had delayed a planned noon arrival time in Port Canaveral.

In a sales point for satellite data and television service providers, the severe storm did not interrupt the ships’ reception of Sunday’s Superbowl coverage, nor its internet connection.

The “extreme wind and sea conditions” were not expected, and resulted in minor injuries for four passengers, said spokeswoman Cynthia Martinez. She did not elaborate on any damages to Anthem of the Seas.

NOAA spokeswoman Susan Buchanan told media that alerts regarding the storm were issued beginning Friday, with an official warning product issued Saturday.

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Indonesia Rejoining OPEC

By MarEx 2015-10-15 12:31:30

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has notified Indonesia that it plans to accept the request to reactivate its membership at the December meeting. Indonesia would increase OPEC’s output by three percent. In July, OPEC produced about 33 million barrels per day, which is well above its target of 30 million bpd.

Indonesia will be the fourth-smallest producer in OPEC just ahead of Libya, Ecuador and Qatar. In 2014, it produced 790,000 bpd.

OPEC was founded in 1960 and is currently made up of 12 members. While OPEC allows associate membership, currently its members are full members and Indonesia is expected to become a full member as well.

Indonesia was the only Asian country that belongs to OPEC member and was a member for 50 years before it left in 2009. Their rising domestic demand and falling production turned the country into a net oil importer.

It does not come as a suprise to anaylsts that Indonesia has returned to OPEC after six years in what many called a suspension from the group . Ecuador which rejoined OPEC back in 2007 after being suspended, so the precedent had been set.

By 2004, Indonesia left OPEC because of growing internal demand and declining crude oil and condensate production in mature fields. After years of limited investment the country became a net importer. It plans to upgrade and expand all existing refineries by 2025.

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European Parliament to Cut More Emissions

By MarEx 2015-10-15 10:54:44

With the U.N.’s climate talks set for December, the European Parliament is voting for more cuts in in shipping and aviation emissions. The European Parliament wants the E.U. and its member states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent over 15 years.

In a statement it said: “Parliament points out that transport is the second-largest sector generating greenhouse gas emissions and calls on the parties to COP21 to work through the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO) on measures to cut emissions before the end of 2016.”

The European Parliament’s release comes after the International Transportation Forum (ITF) stated that it favored a carbon tax for shipping in order to cut emissions.

ITF, a think-tank affiliated with the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), has suggested a carbon tax of about $25 per ton of CO2. Additionally, it wants operators should aim to reduce carbon emissions by half over the next 35 years and completely by 2080.

ITF also said that the impact on maritime trade would be marginal if the tax were set at around USD25 per ton of CO2. The receipts from the carbon tax could provide resources for the Green Climate Fund.

In a September statement, IMO Secretary General Koji Sekimizu said: “I believe IMO is the only place to take this debate forward. Indeed, this was already recognised in the Kyoto Protocol, where IMO was designated as the agency to deal with greenhouse gas emissions from shipping – a responsibility that it has diligently and successfully undertaken.”

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