In developments that could shake and shape northwestern Canada ports from Prince Rupert. B.C. to Churchill, Manitoba the first tankers and bulk carriers have begun crossing the fabled Northwest Passage between Asia and Europe.
This September, a Norwegian bulk freighter owned by Tschudi Shipping Company will carry iron ore concentrate via the NW Passage to China, the first-ever foreign flag bulk carrier to sail west through the Arctic waters.
In August, the 100,000-tonne Russian tanker Baltica left Europe loaded with gas concentrate for China, the first high-tonnage European tanker to navigate the NW passage. The trip took two weeks.
Sailing along the Northern Passage is seen as increasingly attractive by shipping companies because of the retreating ice and subsequently longer shipping season.
Climate change is credited for creating a near ice-free Northern Passage for two months of the year.
For the complete story, read Western Investor, October 2010.