This morning the Deep Panuke Platform was towed from Halifax to sheet harbour, where it will be recycled. The platforms recycling marks the end of the offshore in Nova Scotia, with recent exploration bids coming up dry, and the Sable Gas field now dis-assembled and sent for recycling in the UK.
Nova Scotia has tremendous capability to do work offshore. A transition to offshore wind development would be a good play. many ofthe same skill sets need for offshore O&G work translate well to other projects.
O&G is gone and done. Its not coming back, and the time to move on is now, while we still have the Skills and expertise locally.
The Amy Lynn D with the barge moved to Fairview cove this morning, where the gantry crane will lift the two tugs off the marge and place them in the water. you can see the container spreader has been fitted with a lifting hook.
Dominion Diving has added a pair of new Damen Stan Tug 1205s to its fleet. The two tugs arrived on the barge Jacob Joseph C towed by the tug Amy Lynn D. The new tugs are named Dominion Rumbler and Dominion Enforcer. They are likely at Pier 25 to clear customs, and will then move to the Cherubini Dock to be offloaded by crane tonight.
The third tug, Saint Georges is bound for Montreal. Curiously, the new Dominion tugs are marked Pilot, Suggesting they may have picked up a pilotage contract somewhere.
The former Foundation maritime wharves, now known as ECTug (short for Eastern Canada Towing and Salvage) which was what foundation maritime became when spun off from Foundation Co. (now AECON). ECTUG is now Svizter Canada.
Halifax has a history of Sea Stories, Men Left Halifax to fight in multiple wars, Privateers returned with their captured prizes. The stories that came out of Foundation Maritime were so immense, they filled 2 volumes by Farley Mowat; Grey Seas Under, and The Serpents Coil.
Foundation Maritime grew out of the Foundation Company of Canada, which was a construction firm who owned barges and dredges for constructing Harbour works. They needed a Tug, and found the Laid up ex HMS Frisky, renamed Gustavo Ipland, in Hamburg Germany. They purchased her, and Named her Foundation Franklin in 1930.
Having a tug, eventually led to it being chartered for salvage work, and Foundation Maritime was born. As the years went on, many additional tugs were purchased and chartered, and the business expanded to include terminal operations, towing and salvage. Foundation Maritime shrewdly perusing Business and ships in distress.
For much of its early years, even finding a ship in distress was a problem. Modern electronic navigation systems were not invented yet, and ships were guided by the stars. in a storm, or cloud cover, it could be days before you could confirm your position. This is also the case with the distressed vessel being sought. their position was days old, and may not have even been correct to begin with. if you could reach them on the radio, it might have been possible to RF Direction find them,Though during the wars, this was a asking to be sunk by a uboat.
The Foundation Company of Canada Still exists today as the construction firm AECON. Foundation Maritime Sold its tugs in 1973, Leading to the formation of Eastern Canada Towing and Salvage (EcTug). the tugs retained their names, however Point was substituted for Foundation in their names. ECTug was then acquired, and eventually became Svitzer Canada.
In 2010 they signed a MOU with Atlantic towing, With Atlantic Towing taking over Halifax operations, and Svitzer working Port Hawksbury/ Straight of Canso area. Svitzer last used the wharf in 2015, and Sold the property to Develop Nova Scotia last year.
More recently, the Atlantic Piliots Authority has made use of the wharves.
The foundation Maritime wharves still stand, at the foot of Salter St. for a few more days, to be replaced by a single new wharf to support marina operations.
The Deep Panuke Production Field Center arrived in Halifax today, and was offloaded at the IEL Dock in Woodside. The barge carrying the platform was towed to Halifax by Maersk Detector and Maersk Cutter, and was assisted inbound by five Atlantic Towing tugs.
A change in plans occurred, when the Horizon Arctic was unable to get the anchors that would have held the platform and barge in place in Mulgrave to hold on the sea floor. the platform is only a few years old, so its owners are hoping to reuse it on another project elsewhere. it will be stored at Woodside until a use is found for it.
The Horizon Arctic returned to Pier 9 and offloaded the anchors. the Noble Regina Allen has been plugging Deep Panuke’s wells and currently is working on the final one. it will be towed back to Halifax in a few weeks. before it moves on to its next project.
the Noble Regina Allen returned to Halifax today, after sealing the wells of the Sable offshore Field. the rig tied up at woodside, where it will undergo a work period. in Febuary, it is scheduled to work for EnCana sealing the wells of the Deep Panuke project. When that work is complete in June, the rig is booked in Trinidad.
The New tug venture is proving mysterious – As I mentioned in the article, existing markets are dominated by incumbents. One Industry source contacted me this morning and suggested that they may be setting up to provide services for the Goldboro LNG Export Facility -positing that they would only have success at a new terminal.
Another thought along those lines is that the firm exists on paper to collect a retainer as a service provider to one of the container terminals proposed for Sydney, or the Straight of Canso. time will tell.
This week in the Herald, I cover the announcement that Group Ocean will be building 4 new Tugs for the Navy. These will replace the 5 Glen Class tugs, and 2 Fire Class boats. 3 Glen Tugs are currently stationed in Halifax. Firebird was retired and sold in 2014. The remaining 2 tugs and fire-boat are in service in Esquimalt.
The Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) has responded to a complaint by Heiltsuk Horizon Maritime Services, recommending a review of a key performance requirement in the process to procure two emergency towing vessels for the protection of Canada’s West Coast.
As a bid participant, Heiltsuk Horizon – a partnership of majority partner Heiltsuk Nation of Bella Bella, British Columbia and Horizon Maritime Services Limited, registered a complaint last August that the winning supplier did not meet important safety requirements of the tender process.
I wrote about the issues with the towing contract in this Chronicle Herald Piece when the Atlantic Towing vessels headed west. Heiltsuk Horizon has not publicly disclosed the vessels they bid on the project, though based on other charters they were likely tidewater tugs.
a letter to Heiltsuk Horizon, the Tribunal recommends the Department of
Public Works and Government Services Canada reevaluate the “bollard
pull” (towing power) of the
vessels in all bids received and also awards Heiltsuk Horizon costs
incurred in submitting the complaint.
“The contract was awarded in the absence of the required proof that the vessels met the mandated towing power,” said Chief Operating Officer Steven Widmeyer, Horizon Maritime Services Limited. “We hope this recommendation leads to a reconsideration of our Heiltsuk Horizon vessels, which are in accordance with recommendations of the 2018 Emergency Towing Vessel Needs Assessment by the Clear Seas Center for Responsible Marine Shipping.”
CITT letter recommends no further expenditures be made on the awarded
contract until a review is complete and also lays out potential actions
to be taken post-review,
including cancellation of the existing contract.
Heiltsuk Nation, currently in reconciliation discussions with Canada,
teamed up with Horizon Maritime to form Heiltsuk Horizon, following the
Nathan E. Stewart oil spill in its territory in October 2016.
the Woodward group products tanker Qikiqtaaluk W, has been anchored off Halifax for a number of days, and will be towed into port.
The Tugs Atlantic Oak and Spitfire III will be conducting the move from the outer anchorages to Pier 31. The ship sailed from Montreal on the 23rd, bound for Savannah Ga. under the Marshal Islands flag. it arrived off Halifax on the afternoon of the 26th, and has remained there since.
The Ship was built in Turkey in 2011, and is Ice Class A1. The Newfoundland Based Coastal Shipping is owned by the Woodward group, and spends the summer resupplying the arctic. in the winter, ships are laid up or charted out under foreign flags.
Update: After raising the anchor, the ship actully sailed into the harbour, turned around at anchorage 1, and sailed out again. where it picked up the tugs that brought it back into harbour as a dead ship move.