MS Nordic Orion

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History
Name: Nordic Orion
Owner: Bulk Nordic Orion Ltd.
Operator: Seamar Management S.A.
Port of registry: Panama City,  Panama
Ordered: 27 March 2006
Builder:
Laid down: 10 June 2010
Launched: 17 December 2010
Completed: 4 February 2011
Identification:
Status: In service
General characteristics [1]
Type: Bulk carrier
Tonnage:
  • 40,142 GT
  • 25,265 NT
  • 75,603 DWT
Length: 225 m (738 ft)
Beam: 32.31 m (106 ft)
Draught: 14.089 m (46 ft)
Depth: 19.39 m (64 ft)
Ice class: DNV ICE-1A
Installed power: MAN 6S60MC-C
Propulsion: Single shaft; fixed pitch propeller
Speed: 12.9 knots (23.9 km/h; 14.8 mph)

MS Nordic Orion is a Danish bulk carrier registered in Panama City. A coal and ore carrier, Nordic Orion has a capacity of 75,603 tonnes deadweight (DWT). It was built in 2011 by Oshima Shipbuilding. Nordic Orion has an ice-strengthened hull.[2] It is owned and operated by Nordic Bulk Carriers.[3]

Voyage through the Northwest Passage[edit]

Nordic Orion was the first large sea freighter to transit the Arctic Northwest Passage since global warming opened the route.[3][4][5][6] The ship started its voyage from the Port Metro Vancouver, Canada on 6 September 2013 carrying a cargo of 73,500 tons of coking coal.[7] Nordic Orion completed its voyage through the passage on 27 September stopping at Nuuk, Greenland[2] and reached its destination, the Port of Pori, Finland on 9 October 2013.[8]

Northwest Passage shortened the distance between Vancouver and Pori by 1,000 nautical miles compared to the traditional route via the Panama Canal. Fuel savings were approximately $80,000.[7][9] Nordic Orion was also able to load 15,000 tons more cargo than sailing through the Panama Canal due to its depth limits.[2]

The journey has been described as an opening of a new era on the commercial use of Arctic.[10][11] It has also caused a lot of criticism among environmental organisations like Bellona Foundation[12] and some Canadian experts. Michael Byers, an expert at the University of British Columbia warned about shallow waters and icebergs that may cause risk even to ice-strengthened ships. According to Byers, Canada's search and rescue capabilities in the Arctic area are poor.[13]

Nordic Bulk Carriers has acknowledged the Nordic Orion never would have made the voyage if the Canadian Coast Guard had not provided free icebreaker escorts.[14][15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Nordic Orion (28927)". DNV GL Vessel Register. Det Norske Veritas. Retrieved 2013-10-14. 
  2. ^ a b c "Big freighter traverses Northwest Passage for 1st time". Reuters. 27 September 2013. Archived from the original on 2015-10-16. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "NORDIC BULK CARRIERS A/S". Pangaea Logistics Solution. Archived from the original on 2015-05-23. Retrieved 2015-12-10. 
  4. ^ "Infographic: Navigating the Northwest Passage". The Globe and Mail. 2013-09-18. Archived from the original on 2014-01-04. Route of the cargo ship Yong Sheng, which arrived in Rotterdam on Sept. 10 after sailing across the Northern Sea Route from a Chinese port. 
  5. ^ Wendy Stueck (2013-09-25). "Ship crosses Northwest Passage, sails into history". Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2015-12-10. The ship – a 225-metre, ice-strengthened carrier loaded with B.C. coal bound for Finland – became the first bulk carrier to make the voyage, which has lured explorers for more than a century and has long been eyed as a commercial route. 
  6. ^ Wendy Stueck (2013-09-19). "Danish firm seeks to be first to bring bulk carrier through Northwest Passage". Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2015-12-10. Nordic Bulk Carriers’ vessel Nordic Odin (77,000 dwt, built 2015) has become the first panamax bulker to carry iron ore from Baffin Island, Canada to Europe through Arctic sea ice. 
  7. ^ a b "Nordic Orion first to transit the Northwest Passage". Safety 4Sea. 13 September 2013. Archived from the original on 2015-10-16. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  8. ^ "Luoteisväylän avannut Nordic Orion saapuu Porin satamaan" (in Finnish). Yle Uutiset. 10 October 2013. Archived from the original on 2014-11-11. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  9. ^ "Historic Sea Route Opens Through Canadian Arctic Waters". Maritime Executive. 2013-09-25. Retrieved 2015-12-11. The North West Passage across the Arctic is shorter than the traditional route through the Panama Canal and thereby has the potential to generate important saving in both time, fuel and CO2 emissions. 
  10. ^ "Northwest Passage crossed by first cargo ship, the Nordic Orion, heralding new era of Arctic commercial activity". National Post. 27 September 2013. Archived from the original on 2015-07-30. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  11. ^ Randall S. Abate; Robin Kunduis Craig (2015). Climate Change Impacts on Ocean and Coastal Law: U.S. and International Perspectives. Oxford University Press. pp. 216, 218, 267, 300. ISBN 9780199368747. Retrieved 2015-12-11. 
  12. ^ "Second ever cargo crossing of Northwest Passage overflows with environmental dangers". Bellona Foundation. 25 September 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  13. ^ "How global warming has shaved 1,000 nautical miles off a shipping route: Cargo vessel becomes first to use Arctic Northwest Passage - to transport COAL". Daily Mail. 27 September 2013. Archived from the original on 2015-09-09. Retrieved 11 October 2013. 
  14. ^ Suzanne Lalonde; Ted L. McDorman (2015). International Law and Politics of the Arctic Ocean: Essays in Honor of Donat Pharand. Hotei Publishing. p. 184. ISBN 9789004284593. Retrieved 2015-12-11. Besides the shipping firm that owns the Nordic Orion underlined that the transit was made possible as the Canadian Coast Guard offered free ice breaking escort. Had the company been billed, the transit would not have taken place. 
  15. ^ Adolf K. Y. Ng; Austin Becker; Stephen Cahoon; Shu-Ling Chen; Paul Earl; Zaili Yang (2015). Climate Change and Adaptation Planning for Ports. Routledge Publishing. ISBN 9781317631293. Retrieved 2015-12-11.