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Port of San Francisco builds its bulk cargo business

The vessel, operated by CSL International, made her maiden call at Pier 94 operated by Hanson Aggregates.
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
November 10, 2012

A promising new cargo enterprise was unveiled at the Port of San Francisco late last month when it welcomed the Rt. Hon. Paul E. Martin – a 71,900-deadweight-ton self-unloading bulk carrier.

The vessel, operated by CSL International, made her maiden call at Pier 94 operated by Hanson Aggregates. Hanson imports over 700,000 tons of aggregate and sand into the Port of San Francisco annually.

“We are pleased to welcome the newest CSL International vessel to our port,” said Peter Dailey, Port Maritime Director. 

“The dry bulk sector is one of the key components of our maritime business portfolio,” said the port’s maritime director, Peter Dailey.

The vessel loaded cargo in British Columbia, Canada before arriving at Pier 94 to discharge 64,000 tons of aggregate and sand.  This product is used by the local construction industry for the production of concrete.  As part of CSL’s ambitious fleet renewal program, the Rt. Hon. Paul E. Martin is the first of three Trillium Class self-unloading Panamax vessels to join the CSL International pool during the coming year.

Jim Maloney, the port’s maritime marketing manager, this will be a regular deployment.

“In fact, the Paul E Martin will be back at Pier 94 to discharge additional sand and aggregate from British Columbia for Hanson Aggregates on November 19 and December 17. The vessel will also make regular calls at the Port of Redwood City, and Levin Richmond Terminal to discharge CEMEX and Eagle Rock materials.

CSL International, based in Boston, is a division of The CSL Group, the world’s largest owner and operator of self-unloading vessels and a global leader in marine dry bulk cargo handling and delivery services.  Their port agent is General Steamship Corporation.  The vessel was named in honor of Canada’s twenty-first Prime Minister and former owner of The CSL Group. 

“Hanson Aggregates has been working with CSL International as their principal carrier for many years now,” said Maloney. “Some of the sister vessels of the Rt. Hon. Paul E. Martin that have called here in recent years include the Sophie Oldendorff, the Pioneer, the Nelvana, the CSL Acadian and the Honourable Henry Jackman.

Hanson Aggregates’ volumes have increased significantly over the past two years (up 83% last year over 2010), and the port’s dry bulk overall increased 43% last year over the previous year. CEMEX is another major bulk aggregates importer for the Port of San Francisco as well, supplying their Pier 92 concrete batch plant with aggregates from British Columbia.

“Volumes for 2012 are holding steady and are trending slightly upward from 2011 as local construction projects are creating a strong uptick in demand for concrete,” said Maloney.

About the Author

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Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor

Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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