exports

Ports of Seattle & Tacoma Work On Ship Backlog

Feb 25, 2015
KUOW

The Ports of Seattle and Tacoma are working through the backlog caused by a months longshore work slowdown. Late last week shipping companies and port workers reached an agreement to end their labor dispute. That agreement still needs to be ratified, but both ports say they are working at full speed.

Seattle and Tacoma say the first port worker crews started work on Saturday. The ports are now working to clear the effects of the slowdown that turned the west coast of the United States into a great Pacific shipping campground.

Flickr

Hundreds of people turned out Wednesday for a hearing on a controversial propane export terminal proposed at the Port of Portland.

The Canadian company Pembina plans to transport more than a million gallons of liquid propane by train each day to a terminal on the Columbia River. The fuel would be stored in tanks and piped onto export ships bound for Asia. But the company needs approval from the city of Portland to run a pipeline across an environmental zone.

A popular gift now for Chinese New Year is a box of red apples from Washington. But Northwest shippers say a labor dispute at West Coast ports is jeopardizing that lucrative overseas market.

jkbrooks85/Flicker

Washington-based timber company Weyerhaeuser says it will layoff workers at its Longview mill. 

The company plans to temporarily shut down and layoff workers at its liquid packaging facility, one of four operations at Weyerhaeuser’s Longview site.

The company didn’t specify how many workers will be affect, but more than 500 work at the facility.

Anthony Chavez is a spokesman for the company. He says the West coast labor dispute is affecting the company’s ability to ship its paper products.

Pacific Northwest Christmas Tree Association

Some of the world’s largest Christmas tree farms are right here in the Northwest. Some are harvesting about 20,000 trees a day. The average Christmas tree might be a bit more expensive this year.

Here's why.

A stronger economy and several years of cutbacks on plantings in the Northwest have upped prices this year. Like a few dollars per tree for the farmer.

Bryan Ostlund heads the Pacific Northwest Christmas Tree Association in Salem, Oregon.

Farmers in Idaho say hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of beef, potatoes, apples, cheese and other products are languishing in storage because of problems at West Coast ports.

Clyde Robinson / Flickr

Northwest farmers and orchardists are among the potential beneficiaries if the U.S. and Cuba normalize their relationship and the trade embargo ends. They're better among many still trying to sort out what President Obama's announcement Wednesday of changes in Cuba policy mean for them.

Anna King / Northwest News Network

A slow down at Western ports is now aggravating farmers across the Northwest. Produce processors are laying off production line workers. Apples are backing up. And the summer’s premium hay is stacked in sheds not moving.

Several Northwest Christmas tree growers are trying to push containers full of evergreens through the Northwest’s delayed seaports.

SGL Group

A slowdown at West Coast ports has started to stifle the flow of goods in and out of the Northwest. Apple, hay, and potato farmers said they’ve been having a hard time getting their harvest to foreign buyers because of port congestion. And the delays are now hitting luxury car parts.

A facility in Moses Lake, Washington, that makes carbon fiber elements for BMWs had to shut down production for three days this week.

The German company that owns the facility said the problem was at the Port of Tacoma.

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