Sustainable development of B.C. ports: Leadership perspectives

By BCShippingNews
September 14 2017
Port Alberni
By Captain Stephen Brown

In meeting with the leaders of our primary ports, Vancouver, Prince Rupert, Nanaimo, Victoria and Port Alberni, one is quickly reminded of how fortunate we are to have such a group of talented and dedicated CEOs who literally live and breathe their jobs against a background of major expectations from government, regulators, users, environmentalists and service providers.

It is therefore perhaps worth reminding ourselves of the requirements of the Canada Marine Act which was introduced in 1998. These are summarized in just 187 words:

  • To implement marine policies that provide Canada with the marine infrastructure that it needs and that offer effective support for the achievement of national, regional and local, social and economic objectives and will promote and safeguard Canada’s competitiveness and trade objectives.
  • To promote the success of ports for the purpose of contributing to the competitiveness, growth and prosperity of the Canadian economy.
  • To base the marine infrastructure and services on international practices and approaches that are consistent with those of Canada’s major trading partners in order to foster harmonization of standards among jurisdictions.
  • To ensure that marine transportation services are organized to satisfy the needs of users and are available at a reasonable cost to the users.
  • To provide for a high level of safety and environmental protection.
  • To provide a high degree of autonomy for local or regional management of components of the system of services and facilities and be responsive to local needs and priorities to manage the marine infrastructure and services in a commercial manner that encourages, and takes into account, input from users and the community in which a port or harbour is located.

It is against this background that I had the opportunity to sit down with Robin Silvester, President & Chief Executive Officer of Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (VFPA); Don Krusel, President & Chief Executive Officer of Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA); Bernie Dumas, President & Chief Executive Officer of Nanaimo Port Authority (NPA); Ian Robertson, Chief Executive Officer at Greater Victoria Harbour Authority (GVHA); and Zoran Knezevic, President & Chief Executive Officer of Port Alberni Port Authority (PAPA). 

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