Vol. 5, No. 9, February 2021
A load of stacked shipping containers destined for Florida is seen onboard the O/B Memphis Bridge at Dock 10. The service connects the South Texas and Northern Mexico markets with the East Coast.
Connecting Markets
Work Cat Finding Success with
New Container-On-Barger Service
Editor’s Note: This article was originally featured in The Brownsville Herald.

A persistent shortage of truck drivers in the United States has helped pry open a window of opportunity for the Port of Brownsville in the form of container-on-barge shipping.

Work Cat is currently running two tug-drawn barges between the Port of Brownsville and Port Tampa Bay, each barge capable of holding 274 of the so called "high cube" containers. That’s according to Rick Sharp, vice president of operations for Online Transportation International, who’s essentially running the operation on both sides of the Gulf. Hugging the Gulf coast, the barges move 110 to 130 loads a week, a one-way trip taking four days, he said. Sharp was interviewed at the Port of Brownsville’s Dock 10 on Jan. 21, a stack of containers towering overhead and a huge crane loading the last containers aboard the 17th eastbound barge since the service began.
The Port of Brownsville received and staged pipeline materials for the construction of the Valley Crossing Pipeline, owned by Enbridge. The project was finalized in 2018. A recent Texas Tech study found that Texas’ pipeline industry is expected to contribute $374 billion to the state’s economy from 2015 to 2024 while sustaining 171,000 high-paying jobs annually.
Energy Infrastructure Powers Texas Economy
Editor’s Note: This editorial, co-authored by Jeff Clark, president of the Advanced Power Alliance, and Elizabeth Caldwell, spokesperson for Texans for Natural Gas, was originally featured in the Midland Reporter Telegram.

The phrase "everything is bigger in Texas" is especially true when it comes to energy. While it may not surprise many to hear that our state is the top oil and natural gas producer in the country, we also generate more wind-powered energy than any other state in the union, too. Solar power is growing quickly and, when it comes to electric power generation, we produce nearly twice the power of Florida, the second-largest electricity producer.

Infrastructure makes our success possible. Robust pipeline and processing systems carry oil and gas from Texas’s prolific basins to refineries along the coast, LNG export terminals, or other end-use facilities. Similarly, while Texas produced 28 percent of America’s wind power in 2019, much of that clean power would be wasted without a sophisticated network of transmission lines, carrying that power from windy and sunny regions to our population centers.
BRG Steams Ahead Breaking Record
The Brownsville & Rio Grande International Railway (BRG) ended 2020 riding an all-time high with 51,115 loaded railcars handled at the Port of Brownsville throughout the year.

This marks a 24 percent increase from the 41,207 railcar movements recorded in 2019, a considerable upward trend highlighted by growing movements of steel, wind energy components, grain and petroleum-based products.

Norma Torres, BRG president & COO, said the company is likely to continue handling a high volume of loaded railcars in 2021. 
Bigger, Stronger: The U.S. Dredging Fleet is Growing
The U.S. dredging fleet is growing. Presently on order and under construction is a raft of in-demand equipment that will help to keep America’s ports and waterways open, safeguard coastal communities and maintain the vital flow of maritime commerce to, from and through the U.S.

Continuing the dredge building boom currently underway in the U.S., Manson Construction Co. in September 2020 announced a contract with Keppel AmFELS to build a new hopper dredge at the shipbuilder’s facility in the Port of Brownsville.

The self-propelled TSHD Frederick Paup will be the largest in the United States, representing Manson’s single biggest investment in its 115-year history, the company said. The 15,000 cubic yard hopper dredge—designed in collaboration with Hockema Whalen Myers Associates, Inc. of Seattle—has a length of 420 feet, breadth of 81 feet and draft of 28.5 feet. It will be highly automated with a diesel-electric power system, and built to the requirements of classification society American Bureau of Shipping (ABS).
Gulf Stream Marine Certified Green Marine
LOGISTEC Corporation and its U.S. Gulf Coast affiliate, Gulf Stream Marine, Inc., announced in January the addition of five terminals in Texas that will be certified as part of the Green Marine Environmental Certification Program. GSM's Corpus Christi, Manchester, Brownsville, Care and Freeport terminals in Texas will be joining LOGISTEC's 13 other Green Marine certified terminals in Canada and the USA, further solidifying LOGISTEC's commitment to reducing its marine environmental footprint.

Green Marine is a voluntary environmental certification program for the North American and now European marine industry that encourages leading shipowners, ports, terminals, seaway corporations and shipyards to address together key marine environmental issues to reduce their environmental footprint through concrete actions.

The program sets rigorous objectives through its 13 performance indicators and participants must measure, evaluate and publish their environmental results to continue to participate in the program. Accredited external verifiers review all the data to ensure the requirements are being met, every two years.

"As a proud founding member of the Green Marine program, we believe strongly in its mission of reducing the marine industry's environmental footprint," said Madeleine Paquin, President & CEO of LOGISTEC. "This program is not only well aligned with LOGISTEC's strategic objectives, it encourages other companies to evaluate ways they too can contribute to a cleaner marine environment and makes us all accountable. We are doing this for our industry today and for future generations."


Vice Chairman




Port Director & CEO

Contact Us:
Ph: 956.831.4592 / 800.378.5395
Fax: 956.831.5006
February 2
Groundhog Day

February 3
BND Board Meeting 
February 14 
Valentine’s Day  
February 15 
Presidents Day - Port offices closed 

February 17
BND Board Meeting/ Ash Wednesday

March 3
BND Board Meeting 

March 14
Daylight Savings Begins

March 17
BND Board Meeting/ St. Patrick's Day
Dock Dash
Due to circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 edition of the Port of Brownsville's 5K1M Dock Dash is postponed to a future date.

Port staff will continue to monitor the situation and explore options to reschedule the family run/walk event, held annually the first Saturday in March.

The Port of Brownsville encourages everyone to continue taking precautionary measures against the spread of COVID-19. Please wash your hands, follow social distancing guidelines and wear a mask.
OmniTRAX Recognizes Safe Shippers
OmniTRAX Inc., a comprehensive logistics solutions provider and affiliate of The Broe Group, announced Jan. 20 the 35 recipients of their inaugural Safe Shipper Award, which is presented to companies that shipped or received qualifying loaded cars with no accidental releases in the previous year.

Among the winners recognized are several companies located at the Port of Brownsville serviced by OmniTRAX-managed Brownsville & Rio Grande International Railway:

  • ABC Gulf Coast Terminal
  • Bluewing, LLC
  • Maverick, LLC
  • Trans Montaigne Partners LP
  • Sunoco
  • Valero
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