Port of Seattle

The Polar Pioneer at Seattle's Terminal 5, which was closed last year to cargo and needs at least $150 million in investments to ready it for mega-cargo ships - and to compete with Canadian ports.
KUOW Photo/John Ryan

The West Coast ports dispute is expected to end Friday.

Shipping companies have already accepted the new contract.

Port workers have also voted on the contract and are expected to release their results today.

The Polar Pioneer oil rig in Terminal 5 at the Port of Seattle.
KUOW Photo/John Ryan

Marcie Sillman talks to Seattle Mayor Ed Murray about the Shell Arctic drilling rig newly docked at the Port of Seattle.

Arctic drilling protesters at the Port of Seattle.
KUOW Photo/John Ryan

Hundreds of protesters blocked entrance gates to Terminal 5 at the Port of Seattle for most of the day Monday.

The climate activists intended not just to gain publicity but to stop work on the Polar Pioneer, an Arctic drilling rig that arrived at Terminal 5 on Thursday.

File photo of the Port of Seattle.
Courtesy of the Port of Seattle

Marcie Sillman talks to Mark Szakonyi, executive editor at the Journal of Commerce, about the Northwest Seaport Alliance, a management agreement between the Port of Seattle and Tacoma that is expected to be approved by August.  

The Shell Oil drilling rig Polar Pioneer arrived in Port Angeles weeks ago.
KUOW Photo/Gil Aegerter

The city of Seattle said Monday that a new permit is needed for Shell Oil's Arctic drilling fleet to dock at Terminal 5, a stance that could bring more conflict with the port.

Shell Arctic Drilling Rig Expected In Port Angeles

Apr 16, 2015

Shell Oil’s Arctic drilling rig, the Polar Pioneer, is expected to arrive Friday in Port Angeles, Washington.

Shell has just received the necessary federal permits to drill for oil in the Arctic and will be staging its fleet in Seattle, despite a lawsuit filed by environmental groups and an investigation launched by the Seattle City Council.

Activists have warned of a flotilla of kayaks that would extend a less-than-warm welcome to Shell when it arrives at the Port of Seattle.

Vincenzo Floramo / Greenpeace

After nearly two hours of public testimony Tuesday, Seattle port commissioners upheld their decision to let Arctic oil-drilling rigs dock at the Port of Seattle.

They did vote 5-0 to make it harder for Shell Oil to use the Port of Seattle's Terminal 5 beyond the two-year term of the lease the port approved in January.

City officials are scrutinizing whether the Port of Seattle's permits allow Shell Oil to dock its Arctic drilling fleet at Terminal 5.
Flickr photo/Chas Redmond (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Ross Reynolds speaks with City Councilman Mike O'Brien about plans for Shell Oil's Arctic drilling fleet to dock in Seattle.

Mayor Ed Murray joined O'Brien and other City Council members Monday in directing the Department of Planning and Development to investigate a lease that would allow Shell's fleet to dock at Terminal 5.

Port of Seattle, port, stadium, Century Link
Flickr Photo/ArtBrom (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman talks to Kevin Klowden, managing director of the California Center at the Milken Institute, about the long-term impact of the slowdown at the Ports of Tacoma and Seattle. The slowdown ended over the weekend after nine months of contract negotiations between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association.

 Crews chip away a circle on the southern wall of the pit that was built to access and repair Bertha, the SR 99 tunneling machine. Eventually it helped Bertha break through/
Flickr Photo/WSDOT (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Is this week the re-birth of Bertha? What’s the right punishment for a florist who won’t do gay weddings? And a Bellevue man is on the short list to go to Mars and never return. You’ll meet him, along with Q13 FOX’s C.R. Douglas, Jonathan Martin of the Seattle Times and the Seattle Channel's Joni Balter.

The worsening labor dispute at West Coast container ports is causing shippers to search for alternate pathways to and from Asia.

Port of Seattle, port, stadium, Century Link
Flickr Photo/ArtBrom (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Marcie Sillman speaks with KUOW reporter Carolyn Adolph to get the latest upates on the labor dispute that shut down Seattle ports over the weekend.

Also, Ross Reynolds interviews John Ahlquist, co-author of the book, "In the Interest of Others: Organizations and Social Activism,” which looks at the history of the longshoremen and the union's involvement in politics. Ahlquist is a professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Port of Seattle.
Flickr Photo/SLV Native (CC-BY-NC-ND)

All ports on the West Coast will be closed for business this weekend – a response to ongoing worker slowdown, said a spokesman for the Pacific Maritime Association.

The association represents the 29 terminal operators on the West Coast.

“After three months of union slowdowns, it makes no sense to pay extra for less work,” said spokesman Wade Gates. “Especially if there is no end in sight to the union’s actions which needlessly brought West Coast ports to the brink of gridlock.”

This month Seattle’s Port Commission gave the OK for Shell Oil’s arctic drilling fleet to make West Seattle its home port. The move has been criticized by environmental groups. Ross Reynolds speaks with Seattle-based journalist McKenzie Funk to find out what impact Shell’s lease here will actually have.

The Port of Seattle could soon host drill rigs and barges belonging to Shell Oil.

Earlier this month the Port Commission voted to lease Terminal 5 in West Seattle to Shell to moor and perform maintenance on drilling equipment during the winter months.

On Wednesday, EarthJustice and eight other environmental groups called on the port to reconsider its decision.

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