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454Re: Fw: Details on the future impact on the import and export capacity of our communities - State of the Sea Ports

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  • Phelps Hobart
    Jun 29, 2009
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      Sacramento region gears up for `marine highway' system: Cargo to be shipped by barge between Port of Oakland and Port of West Sacramento 


      Sacramento -

      Very soon, barges loaded with containerized cargo sailing into the Port of West Sacramento . This movement of goods is called the "marine highway" and it will help bring hundreds of new jobs to the region while improving air quality and reducing highway congestion by taking more than 1 million truck trips off area roads.


      More than 100 business and civic leaders heard details of the "marine highway" outlined during the Northern California World Trade Center's annual State of the Sea Ports event, held June 25 in West Sacramento .


      The company expecting to begin shipping containerized cargo from the Port of Oakland to West Sacramento and Stockton is Denver-based The Broe Group and San Francisco-based Eco-Transport. Company vice president Alex Yeros said he hopes operations will start this year.


      The "marine highway" concept offers many positive contributions to the region's economy, Yeros said, including creating new family wages jobs in the San Joaquin Valley , reducing harmful air emissions, improving traffic congestion and safety and reducing wear and tear on highways and infrastructure.


      "The operational concepts are in place, and there's enough shippers support to begin an entry level service," Yeros said.


      Currently, more than 25 percent of the Port of Oakland 's import and export freight travels to and from the Valley over the road, so the marine highway is an environmentally sustainable alternative, he said, citing figures that show one container barge equals two stack trains or 350 container trucks.


      The marine highway also offers advantages of reducing harmful air emissions—more than 660 tons per day—and reliance on foreign oil as one gallon of fuel can move one ton of cargo 60 miles by truck, 426 miles by train but 500 miles by ship.


      Michael Faust, president & CEO of the Northern California World Trade Center , calls the marine highway development potentially a huge economic engine for the Central Valley and our community.


      "This will help make Sacramento , Yolo County and the Port of West Sacramento a gateway to Asia ," Faust said. "It will create hundreds—if not thousands of new jobs over time—and also help our agriculture and manufacturing industries stay competitive as shipping costs can be reduced."


      Other positive business developments at the Port of West Sacramento were outlined by Port Director Mike Luken:


      ·         Rice shippers ADM and Farmers Rice exported nearly 360,000 metric tons in 2008-09 to Japan , Korea , Papua New Guinea , in bagged rice. Connell Rice & Sugar sent 20,000 tons of bulk milled rice to Puerto Rico . Increased rice export is helping the port during the recession.


      ·         The Port of West Sacramento is positioned and equipped to help clean energy technology advance at several of the region's windfarms: 75 complete windmill units and related project cargo arrived in the port June through October 2008 for Solano County .


      ·         Germany-based Enligna is completing one of the world's most modern commercial wood pellet facilities at the Port of West Sacramento . The project will have a "zero carbon footprint" and create wood pellets from forest wood slash, orchard waste from Valley farms and wood waste from construction projects. The wood pellets are designed to replace coal in coal-fired power plants throughout the Pacific Rim . Exports are expected to be in excess of 235,000 metric tons a year.


      ·         West Coast Recycling is building a plant to shred crushed automobiles, planning on shipping 200,000 metric tons a year.


      ·         Deepening of the Sacramento Deep Water Ship Channel 35 miles from West Sacramento to Collinsville will begin thanks in part to the Metro Chamber's Cap-to-Cap efforts that have secured $10 million in federal funds for the $80 million total project cost.



      Subject: Details on the future impact on the import and export capacity of our communities - State of the Sea Ports

      Good Morning,

      As we close in on the State of the Sea Ports event being held on Thursday, June 25th, I wanted to give you a few more details and invite you to attend this event. This event will provide you a first hand briefing on the container barge service that the three ports (Oakland, West Sacramento and Stockton) are working to bring to life. This coordinated and integrated container shipping service has the potential to radically change the type and volume of cargo that is imported and exported into the Central Valley and in the process create and refocusing 1,000's of jobs in California.

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