Vol. 5, No. 10, March 2021
Photo courtesy of International Shipbreaking

International Shipbreaking's yard at the Port of Brownsville became the first U.S. shipbreaking site to achieve EU Ship Recycling Regulation accreditation. The MT Wolverine will be the company's first EU ship recycling project.
ISL Gains EU Ship Recycling Accreditation
International Shipbreaking, part of the world-leading recycler EMR Metal Recycling, has gained EU Ship Recycling Regulation (EU SSR) accreditation for its site at the Port of Brownsville after investing $30 million in compliant infrastructure.

The Brownsville site is the first U.S. shipbreaking site to achieve this accreditation. It can now help EU-based ship owners – as well as ships flying the flags of EU member states – to responsibly recycle their ships at end of life.

The regulations set standards for environmental and health and safety compliance which go above and beyond stringent US regulatory requirements. The International Shipbreaking facility meets EU requirements that ships are completely recycled on hard surfaces to avoid pollutants such as chemicals from paints contaminating the soil and water.

"We have just received and safely moored our first EU ship recycling project, the MT Wolverine," said Chris Green, Senior Manager at International Shipbreaking Ltd. "There is a big future in this industry and, over the past year we have seen three times the number of inquiries from EU ship owners. This indicates the shipping industry is taking more responsibility for how their ships are recycled, rather than using the South Asian shipbreaking beaches."
Progress Report: South Port Connector Road
The South Port Connector Road project, which began August 2020, is currently 30 percent complete.

The 1.9-mile long port connector road connects Ostos Road inside the port with State Highway 4, providing another entry and exit to and from the port and convenient access to commercial lanes at Veterans International Bridge. It also supports operations related to the space industry in South Texas.

The project includes the construction of two bridges over wetlands in the area to minimize environmental impacts on the local ecosystem.

The $25.6 million project is a partnership between the Brownsville Navigation District, Cameron County, the Cameron County Regional Mobility Authority, the Rio Grande Valley Metropolitan Planning Organization and the Texas Department of Transportation.

The South Port Connector Road is slated for completion at the end of 2021. 
Ranking among the top U.S. steel ports, the Port of Brownsville moves more steel into Mexico than any other domestic competitor.
Texas Leads U.S. in Total Exports
In 2020, Texas once again led the U.S. in exports, as it has every year since 2001, according to Census Bureau data.

Last year, Texas’s $279.3 billion worth of exports was greater than the combined worth of the three next largest exporting states: California, New York and Louisiana.
In 2020, California’s exports were worth $156 billion, New York’s worth $61.9 billion, and Louisiana’s $59.6 billion, according to Census data.

In 2019, Texas overtook Louisiana in becoming the number one state in maritime commerce by tonnage, with Houston becoming the tonnage leader among U.S. ports for the first time.
TPA Names Port Person of the Year
The Texas Ports Association (TPA) honored Col. Timothy R. Vail, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Galveston District Commander, as its 2021 Port Person of the Year at the USACE, Galveston District (SWG) Virtual Winter 2021 Stakeholder Partnering Forum.

Each year, TPA honors individuals for their work and support of Texas Ports. TPA President, Phyllis Saathoff, presented Col. Vail with the award in a surprise ceremony.

Since assuming command of the Galveston District in 2019, Col. Vail has worked to ensure the SWG obligated approximately $275 million of Operations and Maintenance funds to maintain all waterways of SWG, which include all Texas ports. 

Under his tenure, the Galveston District has awarded three new work dredging contracts in Fiscal Year 2020, including the Corpus Christi Ship Channel, Freeport Harbor Channel, and Sabine-Neches Waterway. Additionally, the Brazos Island Harbor Channel Improvement Project at the Port of Brownsville is being executed under the Public Private Partnerships Pilot Program and the Houston Ship Channel Expansion Project received a new start designation in the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2021 Work Plan.
Director of Marketing & Business Development Steve Tyndal Retires
Steve Tyndal, PPM, Senior Director of Marketing & Business Development for the Port of Brownsville, retired Feb. 26, 2021, after 30 years in the port business.

Tyndal joined the Port of Brownsville in 2015 to lead trade and industrial development, marketing, communications and public relations for the port.

"Since my arrival in Brownsville I have enjoyed learning more about the local culture and building lasting, rewarding relationships," said Tyndal.

Tyndal spearheaded the creation of the annual Port of Brownsville directory, the monthly electronic newsletter Port Matters, a modern marketing plan, broad-based industry advertising and the implementation of community outreach programs and sponsor-supported anniversary celebrations.

"We thank Steve for his contributions to the success of the port,” said Port Director & CEO Eduardo A. Campirano. "His vision has helped shape the port’s standing as a vital economic engine to our region and state as well as foster appreciation of our port in the community. We wish him the best."

Before serving the Brownsville Navigation District, Tyndal held a similar position at Port Manatee in Florida. 

He earned a degree in journalism from the University of Florida and is certified as a Professional Port Manager by the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA).

Tyndal is past chairman of the AAPA Harbors and Navigation Committee, the association’s longest-standing and largest technical committee. He is a two-time past president of the Port Manatee Propeller Club and served on the executive committee of the International Propeller Club of the United States, and currently serves as a member of the international board.
Charro Days Spirit Lives On
Port staff climbed aboard the Port of Brownsville's float Feb. 26, to commemorate the 84th anniversary of Charro Days.

Established after the Great Depression, the week-long annual celebration recognizes the bicultural heritage and customs of the region and strengthens the relationship between Brownsville and its sister city Matamoros, Tam., in Mexico.


Vice Chairman




Port Director & CEO

Contact Us:
Ph: 956.831.4592 / 800.378.5395
Fax: 956.831.5006
March 3
BND Board Meeting 

March 14
Daylight Saving Time Begins - Don't forget to move your clocks forward

March 17
BND Board Meeting
St. Patrick's Day

March 20
First Day of Spring

March 28
Palm Sunday

April 2
Good Friday - Port offices closed

April 4

April 7
Board Meeting

April 21
Board Meeting
Winter Storm Sweeps Texas
Ports across Texas were affected by a historic winter freeze in February. The Port of Brownsville closed its administrative offices on Feb. 16 due to inclement weather and continued power outages; operations resumed Feb. 17.

Maritime operations at the port continued as the Brownsville Ship Channel remained open. However, terminals were closed from Feb. 16-17, due to the state-wide outages. Terminals opened after power was restored.

The Port of Brownsville Harbor Masters Office and Police and Security Department continued to provide essential services to tenants and port users throughout the weather event. 
Harnessing the Power of Oil & Gas
Editor’s Note: This editorial, is authored by Todd Staples, president of the Texas Oil & Gas Association, and was originally featured in the Rio Grande Guardian.

It would be hard to overstate how much changed in 2020.  

The global pandemic tested our resolve, forced lightning-speed adaptation in nearly every aspect of life, and the topic of energy catapulted to the top of political conversations. 

However, one thing did not change in 2020 and should be more evident than ever: Oil and natural gas are essential and irreplaceable.
Rigs to Ships: Keppel AmFELS Shipbuilding in South Texas
Editor’s Note: This article was originally featured in the Brownsville Herald.
When oil prices plummeted in 2014-2015 because of a worldwide glut and drilling in the Gulf of Mexico fell off, Keppel AmFELS saw much of its offshore-oil-rig business drift away, and it’s never really come back.

The pandemic only worsened the glut, driving oil prices down even more and further dampening enthusiasm for offshore drilling — any kind of drilling for that matter. Some of the world’s largest owners of offshore rigs filed for bankruptcy last year.

Instead of waiting for the rig work to come back over the horizon, Keppel AmFELS, established at the Port of Brownsville in 1990, began pursuing new opportunities that did not involve the fabrication, repair and maintenance of the types of the “jack-up” offshore rigs that had been its bread and butter for years.
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