Navigation Meets "The Mersey Beat"
PIANC MMX Congress and Annual General Assembly in Liverpool
Despite the volcanic ash clouds, more than 500 participants descended upon the "home of the Beatles" when PIANC held its 32nd International Congress and Annual General Assembly in Liverpool, UK, May 9-14, 2010.
The week began with the Annual General Assembly on Monday 10 May, with more than 100 people attending from PIANC member countries. The full U.S. Delegation was able to attend and was led by The Honorable Jo Ellen Darcy, Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works), who presented the U.S. Section Report. The PIANC Resolution passed during the AGA is titled "Regeneration — Past, Present and Future." (pdf, 52 KB)
During the trip, Ms. Darcy hosted a U.S. Section Luncheon at which British PIANC officials were received along with current U.S. Commissioners. This was Ms. Darcy's first opportunity to meet the international PIANC community. Former Chief of Engineers, LTG Vald Heiberg (ret.) formed part of the U.S. Delegation, as did Harry Cook, a PIANC USA Fellow and International Honorary Member.
The U.K. Section organized an excellent Congress in celebration of the Association's 125th Anniversary. There was a strong technical program, an excellent exhibit hall, plenty of networking opportunities, interesting technical tours, and lots of Beatles music!
The Congress Opening Ceremony included a welcome from the Lord Mayor of Liverpool and keynote speeches by Mr. Gichiuri Ndua, International Association of Ports and Harbors, and Mr. Aleberto Zubieta, Panama Canal Authority. Technical presentations began on Tuesday 11 May and ran through Friday 14 May, with four concurrent streams of papers. Papers from the U.S. included topics such as:
Potential of Short Sea Shipping in the U.S.: A comparison with the European Experience (David Grier, USACE)
Achieving Vessel Safety Improvements Using On-Board Tracking/Recording Systems (Craig Philip, Ingram Barge Co.)
Overcoming the Potential Maritime Barriers to International Trade by Countries-in-Transition (Tom Wakeman, Stevens Institute)
Suspended Sediment Plumes Associated with Navigation Dredging in the New York / New Jersey Harbor (Sarah Zappala, HDR Engineering & Catherine Mulvey, USACE)
Highly Productive, Dense and Automated Container Terminal Operating System Trends(Vijay Agrawal, AECOM)
Probabilistic Optimization of Ports Including Effects of Sedimentation(John Headland, Moffatt & Nichol)
Planning Navigation Infrastructure for an Uncertain Future(Anne Cann, USACE).
Furthermore, on the occasion of the Association's 125th anniversary, the prestigious PIANC History Book was unveiled during the Congress Opening Ceremony and was presented to all Congress participants. All members of PIANC will receive a copy of the PIANC History Book in the mail (together with On Course 141), which will be sent in October 2010.
In conjunction with the Congress, a meeting of the PIANC Climate Change Permanent Task Group was held, chaired by Dr. Kate White, USACE's Institute for Water Resources (IWR), with Dr. Jason Giovannettone, also of IWR, serving as Secretary. At both the AGA and an Inland Navigation Commission Session during the Congress, Dr. Craig Philip, Smart Rivers Conference 2011 Conference Chair, made presentations on the next Smart Rivers Conference which will be hosted by the U.S. September 13-16, 2011, in New Orleans.
At the Congress Closing Ceremony on Friday, Jim McCarville, PIANC USA Commissioner, formally announced that the U.S. will host the next Congress in 2014 in San Francisco, CA. The announcement was accompanied by a short powerpoint and video.