James Wilkes, Managing Director of Gray Page, a specialist maritime consulting group in investigating cargo theft, hijacking and piracy, warned against environmental activism posing a risk to the bunkering industry during his presentation at the Petrospot organised Global Bunkering Summit 2020 event on Thursday (2 September).
Wilkes acknowledged there are numerous security-related risks in the maritime industry, and a risk that should be clearly on the radar of the bunkering and marine fuels industry is activism.
Wilkes cites an incident in 2018 where Greenpeace activists boarded the Stolt Tenacity at the Gulf of Cadiz while it was on passage from Indonesia to Holland to protest the destruction of the rainforest in the pursuit of refining palm oil for food production.
Once on board the activists displayed reading “Save our Rainforest” and “Drop Dirty Palm Oil” which was captured on film alongside the name of Stolt writ large along the ship’s hull, said Wilkes.
Greenpeace Netherlands boarded the ship again in Rotterdam, in an effort to prevent the tanker from berthing.
Their target was Wilmar – one of the world’s largest palm plantation owners and Stolt was collateral damage.
“Some bright spark and an activist group, realising how vulnerable small bunker barges are to boarding, putting it together, with what bunker barges do, what they carry, allying that to the procrastination about decarbonising shipping – it seems like an easy target for a climate change campaign. One that, in the right places would be sure to attract media attention,” he warns.
Wilkes observed that the Covid-19 has “supercharged” activism and could pose physical financial and reputational risks to bunkering operations.
In anticipating and mitigating risks in a post-Covid-19 economy, Wilkes advises the industry to “embrace uncertainty” and to think “laterally as well as vertically” to “understand the second and third order problems that we create in solving the first”.
Photo credit: Eelco Böhtlingk
Published: 7 September, 2020
Bunker orders of ISO 8217:2010 spec LS 380 cSt 0.5% for Nord Gemini, Nord Titan, Ocean Rosemary, and Luzern were placed through global commodities trading and logistics house Trafigura Pte Ltd.
While Covid-19 concerns are important, Captain Rahul Choudhuri was quick to note this does not mean bunker fuel related issues have indeed disappeared from the shipping sector.
‘Therefore, representing the players of the Malaysian bunker industry, we sincerely hope that this matter can be refined and reconsidered immediately so that all parties benefit together,’ says communication.
Maureen Poh, a Director of Helmsman LLC, offers plain practical tips on the differences between US and EU Sanctions and shares some thoughts on what companies could do if they are potentially exposed to sanctioned entities.
‘We [Consort Bunkers] have the opinion that the bunker business in Singapore is not related to the widely reported earlier cargo commodity trading mishaps,’ company source tells Manifold Times.
Representatives of INTERTANKO, Helmsman and Rajah & Tann gather to discuss IMO 2020, legal frameworks for the purchase and supply of alternative marine fuels, and the handling of bunker claims.