News & Analysis as of

Vessels Oil & Gas

U.S. Fifth Circuit Affirms $20 Million Judgment Against Barge Owner as Responsible Party Under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990

by Liskow & Lewis on

In July of 2008, nearly 300,000 gallons of oil spilled into the Mississippi River in New Orleans when a tugboat towing an oil-filled barge veered across the river into the path of an ocean-going tanker. American Commercial...more

Meaning of “In Connection With” and “Pursuant To” Under Oil Pollution Act A Question of First Impression in Fifth Circuit

On November 7, in U.S. v. American Commercial Lines, LLC, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the District Court’s ruling that American Commercial Lines (ACL), the owner of a tug boat whose contracted...more

DHS Approves Waiver of the Jones Act for Puerto Rico

by Holland & Knight LLP on

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke on Sept. 28, 2017, approved a waiver of the Jones Act in response to the severe impact Hurricanes Irma and Maria have had on Puerto Rico. The U.S. Department of Homeland...more

DHS: Final Decision Has Not Been Made on Jones Act Waiver for Puerto Rico

by Holland & Knight LLP on

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Sept. 27, 2017, said that it has not formally denied a Jones Act waiver for Puerto Rico requested on Sept. 25 by Rep. Nydia Velázquez (D-N.Y.) and seven other members of the...more

U.S. Dodges OPA Claim But Must Defend Against Insurer’s Negligence Claims

On September 15, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit released a significant Oil Pollution Act (OPA) ruling. The case is Ironshore Specialty Insurance Company v. U.S., et al. The Court of Appeals affirmed the...more

DHS Extends Jones Act Waiver to Sept. 22 and Broadens Geographic Area Covered - Customs and Border Protection Issues Q&A...

by Holland & Knight LLP on

Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke has issued an extension of the original Sept. 8 Jones Act waiver to Sept. 22. The extended waiver, dated Sept. 11, 2017, but only recently posted by the U.S. Department of...more

Jones Act Waiver Extended in the Wake of Irma and Harvey

In the wake of fuel shortages arising from Hurricanes Irma and Harvey, Tuesday evening the US Customs and Border Protection (Customs) extended and expanded its September 8 waiver of the coastwise trade provisions of the Jones...more

Jones Act Waiver Granted in Response to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma

by Blank Rome LLP on

Action Item: On September 8, 2017, Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) Elaine Duke granted a seven-day waiver of the Jones Act in the interest of national defense. The waiver was issued to...more

Harvey's Impact on U.S. Fuel Supply Chains May Trigger Jones Act Waiver Request - Process Cumbersome for Storm-Related Waivers,...

by Holland & Knight LLP on

• A disruption of refinery operations and ocean shipping on the U.S. Gulf Coast in the wake of Hurricane Harvey may spur oil industry requests for a waiver of the Jones Act to permit non-U.S. vessels to move crude oil and...more

New Sanctions Law Complicates Trade Compliance

by Michael Volkov on

Politics and sanctions law go hand-in-hand. In a rare instance of bi-partisanship, Congress united to constrain the administration’s ability to modify the existing sanctions program against Russia. At the same time, Congress...more

Contribution Under the Oil Pollution Act

by Clark Hill PLC on

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals held that a responsible party under the federal Oil Pollution Act (OPA) could seek contribution for cleanup costs—even though they may include purely economic damages—from a partially liable...more

Global Transportation Finance Newsletter - June 2017

by Vedder Price on

So, what is LIBOR? LIBOR—the London Interbank Offered Rate—is one of the most ubiquitous benchmarks for determining short-term interest rates in bank (and other) lending. LIBOR rates are short-term fixed rates quoted for...more

O.W. Bunker: Some Modest Considerations

by Vedder Price on

Vessels cannot sail without fuel. This industry truth is recognized in contracts and under U.S. maritime law. In fact, enabling ship operators to efficiently obtain fuel is so important that U.S. maritime law purports to...more

U.S. Fifth Circuit Greenlights Contribution Action for Purely Economic Damages Under Oil Pollution Act (OPA)

by Liskow & Lewis on

In Settoon Towing, L.L.C. v. Marquette Transportation Company, L.L.C., No. 16-30459 (5th Cir. Jun. 9, 2017), the United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals held for the first time that a Responsible Party under the Oil...more

U.S. Customs and Border Protection Withdraws Proposed Changes to Jones Act Rulings

In a move hailed as a win for international offshore marine contractors and oil companies operating in the Gulf of Mexico and decried as a setback for domestic shipping interests, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection...more

Customs withdraws Notice of Proposed Modification regarding the application of coastwise laws

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

On May 10, 2017, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency withdrew its notice of proposed modification and revocation of a series of letter rulings relating to its position on the application of the coastwise laws to the...more

Cabotage Or Sabotage? Controversial Proposal By CBP To Reverse Course On Decades-Old Policy Regarding Foreign Flag Vessels In Gulf...

by Baker Donelson on

In a sweeping move that has been widely and vociferously praised by supporters and passionately decried by opponents, the Customs and Border Patrol Agency (CBP) on the second-to-last day of the Obama administration’s tenure,...more

District Court Reviews Definition of “Gross Negligence” in Oil Pollution Act Reimbursement Action

On December 22, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued an opinion in Water Quality Insurance Syndicate v. U.S., which reversed the Coast Guard’s National Pollution Funds Center’s (NPFC) finding of gross...more

Offshore Crewing Requirements: Could It Make Things Worse?

by Blank Rome LLP on

It has been years (2009) since I last wrote an article discussing the availability of U.S. citizens to work offshore in support of oil and gas projects during a downturn in the economy. And now, it is even worse. With the...more

Sulphur emissions to be further capped by 2020

by Reed Smith on

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has confirmed that new a global cap on the sulphur content in shipping fuel will be introduced on 1 January 2020. Since 1 January 2012, the global limit has been 3.5% mass/mass...more

India: A False Dawn for Foreign OSV Owners

by Reed Smith on

India’s ambitious drive to reduce dependence on foreign hydrocarbon imports is expected to spur almost US$30 billion of exploration and production investments including in the offshore sector. An increase in offshore...more

Is it a new day for Jones Act enforcement? Maybe. A practical look at coastwise concerns

by DLA Piper on

The Jones Act (46 U.S.C. § 55102) provides that the transportation of merchandise between coastwise US points is prohibited unless performed by vessels that are US-built, owned, and documented. US Customs and Border...more

U.S. Customs Aims to Increase Enforcement of the Jones Act

In what could foretell a significant increase in the enforcement of the coastwise trade provisions of the Jones Act, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (Customs) announced on July 18 the creation of the National Jones Act...more

Focus on Oman: Diplomacy and Dividends

The crucial role of Oman, a sultanate located at the southeastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula, is becoming apparent as the dust settles on the recent Iranian nuclear deal. Oman is adept at balancing relationships in a...more

Offshore Supply Vessel Market Turnaround May Be In Sight, But You Need a Long Telescope to See It

I attended an excellent conference on March 3, 2016, put on by WorkBoat® exploring the “OSV Capital Outlook for 2016 and Beyond”. The conference featured a diverse and highly experienced panel of speakers including investment...more

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