Every month brings a wide range of news and developments for an industry as dynamic as ours! This September, Kemplon Engineering rounds up some of the most buzzed-about headlines and issues in this edition of the Monthly Maritime News Roundup:
The last day of August ushered in shipping turmoil with Hanjin Shipping’s Bankruptcy Filing. Described by JOC.com as “the largest container shipping bankruptcy in history,” the fallout from the filing rocked September with news of scrambling merchants and shippers, marooned ships, ships unserved at port, and seized assets. This development is a huge one for container shipping, not merely for Hanjin’s size – it is the seventh biggest container shipper – but also for the timing, which may be disruptive to high retail demand expected in the coming holidays at the end of the year.
Caught in the middle of all the turbulence are crew members who may be stranded in ships and running out of provisions, even as they worry about their professional futures. Thankfully, concerned groups like nonprofit agency Mission to Seafarers and the union Nautilus are stepping in to offer some assistance.
More news and developments on this are expected in the days and weeks ahead, with moves expected from South Korean courts aiming to possibly rehabilitate the carrier, as well as from ports, creditors, and various other stakeholders including The National Retail Federation, which has reportedly already lobbied U.S. authorities for prompt action.
Even as September brings up big questions for the future, the month also ushers in developments that give us a better picture of maritime past. In Greece, the spectacular, 2,000-year-old Antikythera Wreck is still yielding priceless treasures more than a century after it was found in 1900. It has been announced that scientists recently found a well-preserved set of ancient human remains that has the potential to yield unprecedented DNA information.
In Canada, it was announced that long-lost ship HMS Terror, from the ill-fated Franklin Expedition of 1845, has been found. The expedition, which is considered one of navigation’s greatest mysteries, had famously ended in disaster, with ships locked in ice and then abandoned by desperate, ailing crew hoping to find salvation in a desolate, lifeless icescape that none of them would ultimately escape.
In waters around Norway, the last shipwreck of an epic World War I battle was found in late August. Britain’s HMS Warrior had been one of 250 warships in the Battle of Jutland, of which 25 sank. The battle had claimed some 8,500 lives.
In Denmark, Swedish state-owned energy company Vattenfall detonated World War II mines located in the vicinity of an up-and-coming wind farm. Danish waters are known to still have 5,000 to 6,000 mines left from World Wars I and II.
As this month’s maritime archaeology finds show, traces of human conflict from decades of years past can still haunt our present. What could future generations find from us, with the multitude of wars and tensions currently unfolding?
The Middle East, North Africa and Europe, for example, are still heavily embroiled in The Migrant Crisis, which over the past couple of years has been deemed the largest humanitarian issue of our time. This month brought in more desperate sailings to Europe and with it, more death; in Egypt, a migrant boat carrying as many as 600 migrants sank, leaving dozens dead this month.
In the northern French town of Calais, truckers, farmers, residents and local business owners turned up for a protest against the ‘Jungle,’ a nearby migrant camp home to 10,000 people, which they found not only to be bad for their businesses, but also dangerous for drivers making hauls to the United Kingdom, as desperate migrants sometimes resort to violent measures to smuggle themselves in with the cargo.
In New York, the United Nations held a refugee and migration summit. In London, a one-day installation of 2,500 life vests actually previously worn by refugees were laid out before the Houses of Parliament as a stunning illustration of the magnitude of a borderless crisis that is shaping the face of local politics and creating tensions among neighbor nations of Europe.
In the Asian region, tensions are high too, for different reasons. Following North Korea’s testing a nuclear device this month, the United States and South Korea display their own military might in joint drills. China and Russia have a show of their own, in joint naval drills conducted in the controversial South China Sea.
Finally, here in the United States, September brings with it a fervent desire for the happiness and well-being of all peace-loving people, as we remember all those lost in the 9/11 tragedy 15 years ago, and as we honor the sacrifices of the heroes that rose in its wake. May the current tensions from all corners of the globe simmer down, in favor of a world more peaceful and just, for us and for generations to follow.
If you found this article interesting, check in with us again at the end of October for another update, or turn to Kemplon Engineering’s blog for other news and topics related to the maritime industry. We endeavor to keep it fresh and interesting, as part of our commitment to meeting the needs of our marine and industrial customers.
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For Further Reading
“HANJIN SHIPPING BANKRUPTCY.” Joc.com. Web. Accessed 03 Oct 2016. http://www.joc.com/special-topics/hanjin-shipping-bankruptcy
“Hanjin Shipping bankruptcy causes turmoil in global sea freight.” The Guardian, 02 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2016/sep/02/hanjin-shipping-bankruptcy-causes-turmoil-in-global-sea-freight
“Seafarers Organizations Respond to Hanjin Collapse.” The Maritime Executive, 23 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.maritime-executive.com/article/seafarers-organizations-respond-to-hanjin-collapse
“Finding HMS Terror: the Franklin Expedition and making sense of the past.” HistoryExtra.com, 28 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.historyextra.com/article/bbc-history-magazine/hms-terror-found-franklin-expedition-significance
Metcalfe, Tom. “”Last Shipwreck” from WW I Battle of Jutland Found Near Norway.” Scientific American, 21 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/last-shipwreck-from-ww-i-battle-of-jutland-found-near-norway/
Nordby, Andrine. “MINES FOUND AT HORNS REV 3 SITE.” Vattenfall.com, 21 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://news.vattenfall.com/en/article/mines-found-horns-rev-3-site
Sample, Ian. “DNA from the deep? Antikythera shipwreck yields ancient human bones.” The Guardian,19 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/science/2016/sep/19/antikythera-shipwreck-yields-human-bones-bringing-hope-for-dna-secrets-from-the-deep
Bryant, Nick. “UN focuses on refugees – will it be enough?.” BBC.com, 19 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-37389648
Haynes, Suyin. “‘Graveyard of Life Jackets’ on Display in U.K. to Mark Migrant Summit.” Time, 19 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://time.com/4499146/refugee-life-jackets-parliament-summit/
Khater, Menan. “Death toll of capsized migrant boat rises from 42 to 51.” Daily News Egypt, 22 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.dailynewsegypt.com/2016/09/22/160-released-4-detained-following-boat-capsize-near-rashid/
Newton, Jennifer, Peter Allen and Arthur Martin. “Calais truckers’ Jungle migrant camp protest flops as holidaymakers are simply diverted around their roadblock.” Mail Online, 05 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3773763/Misery-holidaymakers-60-French-trucks-set-block-Calais-against-attacks-migrants-Jungle-Camps.html
Chan, Minnie. “Beijing’s latest joint naval drills with Russia in South China Sea ‘just symbolic gesture’: experts.” South China Morning Post, 15 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/2019659/beijings-latest-joint-naval-drills-moscow-south-china
Lendon, Brad and Paula Hancocks. “US, South Korean missile destroyers in fresh show of force to North Korea.” CNN, 26 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://edition.cnn.com/2016/09/25/politics/us-south-korea-naval-show-of-force/
Pei, Minxin. “How Rocky U.S.-China Relations Benefit North Korea’s Nuclear Missiles.” Fortune.com, 29 Sep 2016. Web. 03 Oct 2016. http://fortune.com/2016/09/29/us-china-northea-korea-nuclear/